Elections

Opposition spots chinks in BJP armour

Congress cadres celebrating in Ahmedabad on Monday.   | Photo Credit: AP

Opposition leaders lauded Monday’s Assembly poll results with the Congress performing better than expected in Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh.

“The voting percentage has declined, more so if you compare it with the 2014 parliament election, where BJP had a lead in 164 seats. It is a sign of sharp growth in discontent in people,” CPI (M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury said.

 

However, the discontent did not entirely transfer into votes because of communal debate triggered by BJP, he added. “BJP reduced the debate to Ram vs Haj. This prevented converting the discontentment to vote against them,” Mr. Yechury said.

Invincibility shattered

Trinamool Congress President and Chief Minister of West Bengal Mamata Banerjee went a step ahead to say that Gujarat’s voters had effectively belled the cat. “I congratulate Gujarat voters for their very balanced verdict at this hour. It is a temporary and face-saving win, but it shows a moral defeat for BJP. Gujarat voted against atrocities, anxiety and injustice caused to the common people. Gujarat belled the cat for 2019,” she said.

 

Gujarat results, the opposition leaders believe has effectively punctured the myth of the BJP’s invincibility. “Gujarat has exposed invincibility and robustness of BJP’s election machine. Rahul Gandhi worked for three months and brought in this change. I am sure 2019 we will see a new narrative,” RJD spokesperson Manoj Jha said.

The Assembly polls results have now heightened the chorus for opposition unity ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. “The Congress fought well in Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh. There is an urgent need for the entire opposition to unite to demolish BJP,” Samajwadi Party’s Naresh Agarwal said.

Mr. Yechury, however, adds a caveat. “The Gujarat polls has made it clear that deep discontent is not enough; people’s confidence cannot be won unless an alternate policy is offered. It is not neta (leader) but niti (policy) that wins. The opposition needs to introspect on this,” he said.

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Printable version | Apr 19, 2021 11:37:34 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/elections/myth-of-bjps-invincibility-stands-busted/article21855631.ece

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