That Indian coalition prime ministers can fall for seemingly obscure reasons is a fact. The Congress pulled down Chandra Shekhar over two Haryana cops allegedly spying on Rajiv Gandhi. It ended I.K. Gujral’s run for not parting with the DMK despite the Dravidian party’s support for the Tamil Tigers. Now comes the Left’s ultimatum over the India-US nuclear agreement.
If the Left were so concerned about India’s interests, we wish it had the courage to pick causes that matter rather than revisit Cold War dogmas in the guise of national interest. Today’s Mint shows how a key plank of the UPA’s Common Minimum Programme—providing nutrition to mothers and children—has been a disaster despite Supreme Court orders. It is scandalous that millions of Indian children are underweight and undernourished. It makes a mockery of our “great power” dreams. That is the kind of real issue worth seeking a fresh mandate from the people.