The pepper spray constituency would have normally laughed away a man who endorsed such a product, worse a man who is accused of being responsible for riots in which thousands died, or were maimed or destroyed in other ways. Yet, Modi is rising in stature among them, as he is among the rest of the refined educated urban class. They have set and are setting a case for him to be Prime Minister. He is rising among them because morality, at its very core, has the quality of an argument and practicality, of resolution.
Considering the mountain of undisputed facts, the evidence the Team was looking for was probably incontrovertible proof that Modi stood on a table and ordered his officers to facilitate riots. There is no such evidence, there will be no such evidence.
The perception is that Modi is tough, articulate and has ideas. Even though he is 63 years old, and Rahul Gandhi 43, it is Modi who is perceived as the youth and Gandhi the relic.
The Economist, like Modi’s new sophisticated urban fans, wrote that Modi needs, ‘to show that his idea of a pure India is no longer a wholly Hindu one’.
Kejriwal is an equal match for Modi, he says. “Arvind’s political acumen is unmatched. He has this instinct, amazing instinct. He knows the pulse. He knows what to do. He knew the [broom] symbol was right, he knew the name was right. He chose them. He knows how to fight politicians. And he is not afraid.”
And, like Namo Pepper Spray, Kejriwal’s nozzle ‘always points towards the attacker’s face’.