With an eye on next year’s assembly polls in five states, including Uttar Pradesh, and on “Mission 2019”, Prime Minister Narendra Modi pressed BJP party workers to realm the goodwill the party received in 2014 till the next general elections. The Prime Minister asked the party leaders to preserve its 11 crore members. Modi also gave tips to party leaders to change in accordance with technology, time and age, keeping in mind the assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh which are due next year. He poured his heart telling his party workers how important these elections are for the party, but on the other hand the approach of Amit Shah was same, he trained his guns at the state’s Samajwadi Party government and raised the issue of alleged “migration” of Hindus from Kairana, in Shamli district, and the recent Mathura violence. Shah also targeted the Congress party in his speech. He attacked the SP government over the “atmosphere of violence” in Uttar Pradesh.
Shah directed his ire against the Congress, saying its politics of obstructionism had become the hallmark of the main opposition party in the last two years. This is also the reason for the weakening of the Congress. Shah pointed out that the two years of the Modi government have been corruption-free, ignoring Vyapam, Chikki, CCTV, irrigation, Khadse corruption in Maharashtra. They conveniently are overlooking the fact that BJP has many stained leaders who are neck deep in corruption. He also asserted that the NDA government’s two years have been exceptionally good and a lot has been achieved, whatever BJP claims to be but people are not happy with their governance. Still, they are confident that the party will return to power in Uttar Pradesh in 2017 and the Centre in 2019 as well.
BJP is tirelessly boasting about its completion of two years and achievements, but its staunch supporter Baba Ramdev has expressed his dissatisfaction over black money issue. The yoga guru, however, praised the central government for carrying out development projects and its zero tolerance policy on corruption. In December last year, Ramdev had spoken out against NDA government’s initiatives to bring back black money from foreign countries but hoped that it will soon act on the issue. On the controversy revolving over film ‘Udta Punjab’, Ramdev said he could not comment on the matter as he does not watch movies. However, he agreed upon the use of drugs in the country is growing which should be stopped and efforts are required to be made by everybody in this regard. Anyway, Ramdev’s dissatisfaction has given a clear message to the voters that BJP has failed on its election promises. This much propaganda is enough to campaign against party in election bound states.
Meanwhile, Delhi Police is digging old graves and issued a statement, that Indians joining al Qaeda were moved by the 1992 Babri mosque demolition and 2002 Godhra riots and were committed to establish base of terror outfit al Qaeda in Indian Subcontinent (AQIS). In its charge sheet filed against 17 accused, Special Cell of Delhi Police said for the purpose of jihad, some of them had gone to Pakistan and had met Jamat-ud-Dawa chief Hafiz Saeed, Lashkar-e-Toiba’s (LeT) Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi and several other dreaded terrorists. These three Pakistani militants had come to India for taking revenge against Babri Masjid demolition and had planned to attack Ram Mandir in Ayodhya but got killed, the charge sheet claimed. The police named in its charge sheet 17 accused, 12 of whom are absconding, for allegedly conspiring, recruiting Indian youths and establishing a base of AQIS in India. The demolition of Babri and Godhra, both incidences are BJP’s weakness and Black money is another challenge. All these crucial issues might create trouble for the party in future.
Anyway, the survey has predicted that BSP is likely to win185 seats in the 403-members assembly. BSP was reduced to 80 seats in the defeat of 2012 polls but the scenario now would let Mayawati return to the helm of affairs in the state. SP, on the other hand, is keen on repeating its performance of 2012, but the party is witnessing a wane in its popularity. The survey has found that Samajwadi Party may win only 80 seats (228 in 2012) this time around. In 2014 General elections, SP won only five out of 80 seats in the state, whereas BJP swept the state by winning 73 seats along with allies. The 2017 election that holds the key to Narendra Modi’s second term in 2019 has suggested that the BJP+ is likely to bag 120 seats but that wouldn’t be enough to form the government. Uttar Pradesh is also crucial because after being routed in Bihar last year, the BJP cannot afford to lose the heartland state. Despite attaining successes in Gujarat in 2014 and then Bihar in 2015, master poll strategist and public health professional, Prashant Kishor, does not seem to be doing wonders for Congress. The party with RLD is seen winning mere 13 seats while others in fray bag five. BSP Chief Mayawati (31%) has emerged as best suited to become the next CM of UP closely followed by Akhilesh Yadav (30%) of SP. Rajnath Singh (18%) of the BJP was a distant third. According to the respondents, unemployment, inflation, corruption and poverty are going to be the four most important election issues in the forthcoming Vidhan Sabha Elections to be held in 2017.
Performance of the SP government since last four years has been rated just below average with a mean score of 2.9. 32% respondents gave a rating of Very Good or Good compared to 36% who rated the government performance as Poor or Very Poor. However, Muslim voters feel it is well above average. Similar response was received when asked about the performance of the UP Chief Minister. The current SP Government led by Akhilesh Yadav has been seen as more corrupt compared to the previous Mayawati led BSP government in UP. This perception is higher among the Hindus and BPL respondents. Mayawati is known for keeping strict law and order situation whereas BJP is known for rioting and ignoring Muslims and Dalits. SP has failed to win people’s confidence. Modi’s popularity is not enough to win in UP, as BJP’s ministers never gave any access to people since they won with massive majority.
Looking at the present scenario whatever BJP might try, its Mayawati who is going to benefit in UP.
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