1
THE BJP AND THE BOMB

Kanti Bajpai

ON MAY 11 AND 13, 1998, India exploded a total of five nuclear devices in the Rajasthan desert. Since 1974, when India first tested a nuclear device, there had been an expectation that New Delhi would once again test and perhaps go nuclear outright. Yet the 1998 series of tests caught most Indians and the world by surprise. Why did India test after a gap of twenty-four years? Most accounts and explanations of the Indian nuclear tests—including the government's own public statements—have focused on the strategic rationale for India's nuclear program. Much less attention has been paid to the domestic roots of the decision to test. What role did domestic political considerations play in the Indian government's decision?

This chapter addresses two questions about domestic politics and the Indian nuclear bomb. First, what were the domestic political incentives for the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which came to power in March 1998, to test barely six weeks later? Second, what were the domestic political effects of the BJP's decision to test nuclear weapons? Here, I focus on how the BJP remained politically unscathed despite a series of crises with Pakistan in the Indian part of Kashmir after the party took a series of positions and initiatives that were either palpable failures or that contradicted earlier stands. Why was the party not taken to task by the public and not hurt politically, including in the 1999 elections that occurred just after the Kargil War?

I have put the BJP at the center of my analysis. Although the BJP was only one of the twenty or so parties that made up the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) that came to power in March 1998, it was the single largest party in the alliance and indeed the largest party in India in terms of the number of seats

-25-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Inside Nuclear South Asia
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
/ 281

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.