- The opposition parties led by the Grand Old Party had us believe that the recently concluded state assembly elections to five states are a semifinal of sorts before the mother of all polls – the parliamentary elections – scheduled in April/May next year. The Congress was aggressive in their campaigning leading up to the polls in these states by attempting to deride the central dispensation about the imaginary rising inflationary trends, unemployment scenario, divisive politics, caste equations, and communal angle ostensibly dividing the society to no end. The narrative was so forcefully propagated leading up to the elections that the electorate was expected to toe the line of the opposition shenanigans. That’s what the opposition leaders thought.
PC: Indian Times
- But the electorate cannot be swayed away by mere promises, assurances, reassurances, and unworkable sops appears to have been lost on the political class, especially the opposition. The electorate has become smart over the years and will not settle for anything other than concrete action on the ground. Of course, none of the elections in the country is complete without the freebies being bandied about with impunity. The recently concluded state assembly elections too witnessed great rhetoric apart from the dole-outs denigrating the leadership with sometimes below-the-belt statements. Did it succeed in swaying the voters to choose merely based on negative rhetoric? The results show it didn’t work for the Grand Old Party.
- For the uninitiated, in the three Hindi heartland battles in the states of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, and Chhattisgarh, the fight was directly between the BJP and the Congress. We all know Rajasthan has never seen a party getting blessings from the electorate successfully in the last three decades. The revolving door situation was expected. However, the Congress was confident that it would be successful in winning over the electorate on the back of marginally successful welfare schemes. Nonetheless, the open discord between Ashok Gehlot and Sachin Pilot did puncture the Congress’ campaign to a great extent. Not that the BJP cohesively fought the election since the saffron brigade too had too many discordant notes emanating from aspirational leaders.
- Rajasthan poll results have firmly reestablished that the revolving door phenomenon stays intact. The BJP stormed back to power quite comfortably. Indeed, the result from Madhya Pradesh is nothing short of fascinating as Congress had the entire country believe that it would be a cakewalk at the hustings. Stunningly, the BJP stormed back to power with an overwhelming majority and succeeded in inflicting a demotivating defeat on the Congress. What to say about the Chhattisgarh results? When nobody projected the BJP as having a whiff of a chance, the results smashed all pre-exit poll predictions to smithereens by winning comfortably. The consolation for Congress is the win in Telangana. This round goes to the BJP.