BJP’s rising political graph worries fronts

Kozhikode The emergence of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) as a force to reckon with in the State’s polity leaves both the Congress-led United Democratic Front and Communist Party of India (Marxist)-led Left Democratic Front in a fidget in the run-up to the three-tier local body polls next month.

Literally, the rise in the vote share of the BJP began significantly from the previous local body polls after its cobbled up an alliance with the Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana (SNDP) Yogam-supported Bharath Dharma Jana Sena ( BJDS). The upsurge continued in the subsequent Assembly and Lok Sabha polls.

In the 2015 local body polls, the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance garnered 13.28% of the popular votes against the LDF’s 37.36% and the UDF’s 37.23%. It won 933 of the 15,962 grama panchayat wards, 21 out of 2,076 block panchayat wards, three out of 331 district panchayat divisions, 236 out of 3,122 municipal wards and 51 out of 414 Corporation divisions.

Ant-Modi campaign

An anti-Narendra Modi campaign helped the CPI(M) to reap better electoral dividends in the 2015 local body and 2016 Assembly polls by securing especially the trust of the Muslim community. In the previous Assembly polls, the LDF received 43.48% of the votes while the UDF got 38.81% and the NDA, 14.96%.

However, this rich electoral output was ephemeral for the CPI(M)-led coalition. And it reflected in the Lok Sabha polls of 2019 in the aftermath of the Sabarimala issue, which many attribute to the party earning the ‘wrath’ of the Hindu community. In a reverse swing, the Congress-led UDF got 47.48% and the LDF vote share declined to 36.29%. Even then, the NDA secured 15.64% of the votes.

The political graph of the BJP has been steadily heading north while the vote share of the UDF and the LDF has been oscillating according to the changed political scenario. Now the stringent anti-minority plank charge against the BJP by both the coalitions seemed to have been replaced with other issues.

Some 400 nominees of the BJP belong to minority communities. Of these, 100 Muslims, including a dozen women, are contesting on the party ticket. More Christians dominate the campaign scene of the BJP in Thrissur and Kottayam districts. This is a double worry for both the LDF and UDF not only in the local body polls but also in Assembly elections next year.

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Printable version | Jan 18, 2021 7:41:13 AM |

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