Lok Sabha Election 2019

Opposition looks for State-level swings

Hoardings of Samajwadi Party leader Akhilesh Yadav are being removed from the party office at Lucknow on March 10, 2019 after announcement of dates of for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.

Hoardings of Samajwadi Party leader Akhilesh Yadav are being removed from the party office at Lucknow on March 10, 2019 after announcement of dates of for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.   | Photo Credit: Rajeev Bhatt

It doesn’t want a ‘Narendra Modi vs all’ narrative

With just 74 days to go before a new government assumes power, the Opposition parties does not want a “Narendra Modi versus all” election. Instead, they want to break it down to 543 contests — one in each Lok Sabha constituency.

The parties are also keen on changing the post-Pulwama narrative to bring back to focus critical problems such as farmers’ distress and rising unemployment.

“It will be an election that will decide the destiny of our secular democratic republic. And it will be an election where a combination of forces will crystallise at the State level to defeat the challenges posed by this government,” CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury said. While the BJP wanted the post-Pulwama rhetoric to take centre stage, he said, it could not dictate the voters’ choices.

The regional parties are confident that State level factors will outstrip the national issues. “The elections will be fought in each constituency, this shall be probably the first election in Independent India which will be an amalgamation of micro-level engagement with macro issues,” Manoj K. Jha, Rajya Sabha membr of the Rashtriya Janata Dal, said.

 

This is especially true for the States where the Assembly election is being held simultaneously. “The election will play on multiple levels, there will be a local, State and national agenda. At least in Andhra Pradesh, the question on who will be the best person to lead the State will overtake all other issues. It will be an election to choose the right leader to fight for people’s issues,” Telugu Desom Party MP K. Rammohan Naidu said.

The Opposition parties are confident that they the narrative of hyper-patriotism post-Pulwama will not sway the voters. “The BJP will definitely try to make that an issue. But unfortunately for them, the people will cast votes on the basis of their livelihood experience of the past five years,” Mr. Yechury said,

CPI leader D. Raja said it was not easy to hoodwink the voters. “The BJP stands thoroughly exposed in its crude attempt to politicise the post- Pulwama tragedy rhetoric,” he said.

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Printable version | Mar 29, 2020 10:44:34 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/elections/lok-sabha-2019/opposition-looks-for-state-level-swings/article26488798.ece

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