BJP has lost elections 2018 in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh. The national media is hyper-active theorizing that Narendra Modi wave has ended, Modi magic does not work anymore, Amit Shah has lost his touch, Amit Shah does not know the electoral pulse anymore and so on.
Congress has won elections 2018 in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh. The national media is hyper-active theorizing that Rahul Gandhi has finally arrived, Rahul Gandhi is no longer the Pappu, Rahul Gandhi has delivered, Rahul Gandhi knows how to win and so on.
In short, the national media seems to be forecasting that Narendra Modi has already lost India 2019 and Rahul Gandhi is ready to claim what he believes is genetically his.
Is it that straight-forward? Nobody seems to remember the massive drubbing received by Congress in Telangana. Nobody seems to care that by losing Mizoram, Congress is currently wiped out in North-East.
I would rather feel that Narendra Modi has done himself a large favour by losing these 3 state elections to stay back in Delhi for the second term in India 2019.
Narendra Modi is best when he is on the offensive
To put it honestly, Narendra Modi does not have many achievements and whatever he does have; he does not know how to put it across to the public. What however he does know is to attack and do it relentlessly.
For India 2019, Narendra Modi would have been hard-pressed to find topics for canvassing. Similar to him, his Chief Ministers do not have any achievements; rather they are even more pathetic. What would have Narendra Modi spoken about?
Now, Narendra Modi will go hammer and tongs after the Congress governments in these 3 States and will keep bringing them in discussion in the other States.
Rahul Gandhi will get further imperial and lose it, further
Rahul Gandhi does not have any better narrative than Narendra Modi. Rather, he does not have any narrative at all, apart from Rafale, his temporary muse. Though, what he will have is the brainwave that Indian electorate is ready to accept him as the king if the elections are held now.
Congress has been out of power for time immemorial in Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh. There is a continuous push and pull between the generations of dynasts and it will worsen in these 3 States with Congress coming in power. They will be more interested in enjoying the perks rather than putting in the efforts to govern.
Now, the above two things will further the feeling of entitlement in Rahul Gandhi’s mind and the Congress ranks. Come India 2019, they will not have anything to show for in these 3 States and will be found high and dry in deliverables promised for.
(I am writing this on Sunday, 16th December. Chhattisgarh results came on Tuesday, 11th December. Congress won with thumping majority. Yet as on date, the State does not know who the next Chief Minister is going to be. Need any more comment about the Congress culture?)
The Coalition will be even harder to come by for India 2019
Rahul Gandhi will think that he can win on his own with these 3 election results. Regional parties will not surrender easily, for if they do, they cease to exist. Who will blink first in negotiating for the seats in India 2019?
Rahul Gandhi never had the patience to sit through the meetings with the regional parties and put up with their tantrums. Now, he will think that he has even lesser reasons to do so.
The regional parties have to protect their turf and will try to bargain hard by keeping their expectations even higher.
The result – Lots of wrangling, lots of media fodder and nothing sensible coming out of it.
Rajasthan has a habit of changing governments every 5 years. Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh had fatigue factor with BJP after long terms of power with them. So, if they lost, what is so big a hue and cry about Narendra Modi magic waning? What is this thing that Hindus are not voting for Narendra Modi anymore? And from where does this thing come that Rahul Gandhi’s temple visits are bearing results?
In reality, BJP’s vote share in Madhya Pradesh is higher than Congress. In Rajasthan, it is only a percentage that separates the 2 parties. Narendra Modi and Amit Shah will not need to do much to turn it around, unless they panic, which they seem to be.
It is good to lose once in a while, it keeps one grounded.
It would have been better if national media would have discussed the State governance issues and considered them as a foundation for analysing the election results. But, I suppose it is a bit too much to expect.
The current political discussions and media debates show our priorities, not the governance but the petty politics and furthering one’s own agenda.