The coming together of opposition meet in Bengaluru has produced some result which will give some headaches to Modi and his team. A very clever move on the Opposition’s part is the killing of the UPA and re-inventing themselves as Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance (“INDIA”). It will be NDA v INDIA in 2024.
Whether Modi bhagats like it or not, it will get some what we call in Australia ‘donkey’ votes in the rural areas where education is sparsely and people have the propensity to vote on nationalistic lines.
But before you think I am writing Modi off in 2024, I must admit, the scope of this trick will smaller in its yield than the minds who coined this acronym hope to see.
Twenty-six opposition parties have come together under the team INDIA banner.
None of their incompatibilities have been resolved and that is going to be a case of the un-do-able political craft. At least that is how it seems to be.
The next meet is going to be in Mumbai. All the political craftsmen are treading carefully, not to lay a foot on any political land mine and deliver another fragment like the Eknath Shindes and Ajit Pawars to the BJP.
Modi factor is monumental at the moment. It does need a very systematic plan for the Opposition to even get NDA V INDIA anywhere close to being able to be a threat to his ever-increasing ascendency in Indian politics.
All the politicians on the other side – know it well that – unity against him must be seen to be seamless and thus stable. Having been at the wheel at some point in their political careers, they know very well how important empiricism is in politics. Thus the camfest (camera festivals) holding hands of people who they had called all sorts of names only yesterday.
But that is compulsions of politics at play.
The real reason of their defeat in 2024 will be ‘they, themselves’. Because, they, themselves are the reason Modi is so strong today.
I will explain. All the Opposition leaders, worth anything have been playing the ‘saffronisation’ of Indian politics by Modi card. In doing so, they and their stooges in the media have been pandering to those in the West, who from time to time, give money for that exercise.
There are two takeaways from this. First, those in opposition put their benefactors (in the West) on a pedestal and subject themselves into a perennial bow (‘salaam’) before them. Secondly, the have vacated an entire territory to Modi and his where majority of votes lie thinking by engineering a fragmentation of votes, they can defeat Modi and annex power.
Modi, and his team on the other hand, love it. Their job now is only to positively appeal to that exclusive territory voters, strategically in strategic areas and win seats. The gains the BJP recorded in the last Bengal elections is one such example.
The only raw nerve for Modi is the “freebies culture”, where offers of giving free things are made during election campaign. Karnataka election result was purely based on that, the way Punjab election was.
But if the people of Karnataka who are yet to see any promised delivery by the state government speak and declare the election win by the Congress was a con job on them, Modi and his team are more than capable and should be able to take care of the art of election freebies.
All this means one important thing – the minimum common program and seat sharing arrangement of the team INDIA – will be as important as the beaming of the smiling faces holding hands.
If they can work that out, the prime ministerial candidate can be a smaller hurdle.
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