A dangerous gamble – by Pallavi Aiyar Extract

The Indonesian President’s choice for running mateis disappointing, though not surprising
Indonesian elections have a history of generating strange bedfellows. Yet, even by Indonesia’s flexible standards, President Joko Widodo’s recent announcement of his running mate for the 2019 general elections is disappointing, if not altogether surprising. His pick, Ma’ruf Amin, is an Islamic cleric with the kind of anti-liberal record that is antithetical to what the Indonesian President was once thought to stand for. there is a fine line between tactical compromise and rank opportunism. And the genie of identity politics once out of the bottle may prove impossible to put back in. Picking Mr. Amin as his running mate could help him win the election, but it is a dangerous gamble for the future of a country that has so far been a moderate beacon in an expanding sea of religious extremism.
Pallavi Aiyar has reported from China, Europe, Indonesia and Japan. She is a Young Global Leader with the World Economic Forum
Source  : https://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-opinion/a-dangerous-gamble/article24755984.ece

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