Of India, Democracy, Elections and Hopes..
The biggest festival of democracy is in full swing and if opinion polls are to be believed, the wind is blowing in BJP’s favour and it is just a matter of days before Mr Narendra Modi will get a new address from Gandhinagar to 7, RCR. But the bigger question here is whether the wind is strong enough to make Mr Modi pack his bags and shift to the national capital.
Congress is facing huge anti-incumbency of 10 years & combined with scams under the Manmohan govt, not to mention Mr Singh’s image of being a silent and weak PM, no one would be surprised if Cong might hit its all time low getting less than 114 seats that it got in 1999. Now the question is how many of these anti-Congress votes can Mr Modi get in his kitty & would he get enough to silent his baiters in the party and rise to the occasion.
The BJP seems to be all about Modi and he has become bigger than the party. All the decisions from candidate selection to coalitions and even manifesto had Modi’s approval, because of which we even saw BJP dilly-dallying over the manifesto causing embarrassment to the party.
Modi and His ‘Confident’ Daydreams…
Modi has finally started giving media interviews, where his answers suggest that he has already become the PM. He talks about his big, broad vision for the country, though his silence on many topics also speaks volumes. Modi’s confidence comes from the Congress’s inaction, weak leadership and the biggest of all, opinion polls. The question is how credible are opinion polls and what exactly is the number Modi should get that there isn’t a dark horse in the race who suddenly crops up and Modi after leading party to an honourable victory gets side-stepped.
Give us 80 Lotuses from UP so that India gets a strong Govt. Cong, SP & BSP should not open their accounts in UP http://t.co/W3UNisJnm0
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) April 21, 2014
Manner in which Cong, SP & BSP are mocking my poor background shows their mindset. Yes, I am proud I sold tea…I never sold the nation.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) April 21, 2014
Opinion polls have always been a bone of contention with ministers in Manmohan govt demanding a complete ban on them. These polls work well when they are restricted to states because the demographic variation is less, sample size is considerable and issues are more or less homogenous through the state. But the accuracy of these predictions is completely under scanner when it comes to the General elections. 2004, 2009 are classic examples where opinion polls proved to be wrong and the history might just repeat itself. This is not to say that BJP is not coming to power.
There is a strong anti-Congress sentiment in the country and needless to say, it will be reflected on May 16th but writing them off completely and giving NDA a sweeping 275 seats with 226 to BJP might actually cause an embarrassment to poll agencies and channels on May 18th . Polls predict more than 40 seats for BJP in UP and some have given them even more than 50 seats. What these pollsters forget is that parties like SP, BSP has voters who are not media friendly, keep a low profile and are silent voters. Making them count out of the race might be a big mistake. Similar is the case with Bihar where BJP-LJP is expected to make huge gains, but again giving them 2/3rd of seats might be discounting Lalu’s hold over his voters who are coming back to him after the BJP-JDU alliance has broken.
Modi Vs BJP?
The moment prediction of opinion polls of just these 2 states starts showing error; the BJP might well go below 200 seats which will be a bad news for Mr Modi. Hunting allies with less than 200 seats in hand will not give an opportunity for opposition to point fingers at Modi’s extensive and most expensive campaign in history , voices of dissent in the BJP that are quiet now owing to a proxy-Modi wave will emerge stronger. Since Modi has been provided with every single thing he has asked for, from candidate selection to manifesto to deciding campaign schedules , anything less than 200 for BJP will start the hunt for an alternative leader in BJP for PM. Allies will be more demanding, BJP will need new allies and it will be difficult to get people who are not with NDA now, since they are not with BJP as they consider Modi a divisive figure.
1,2,3,…GO: Bhag Modi Bhag
This is a make or break election not for BJP, but more for Modi. After all, the man has put in all that he has in these elections. If he succeeds to take BJP above 200, with the kind of posturing, he does and the way he projects himself, he might play a long inning at 7, RCR, maybe more than one term, but if he fails and falls below 200, even his Gandhinagar throne might not be as secure.
By Rishi Sinha
Image Source: PTI
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