• kewal sethi

dumping the bjp


dumping the bjp

(written in 2013. lot of water has flown down the ganga since then)

nitish has been endeavouring to get rid of the bjp burden for some time now. at times he is not subtle about it. the way he prevented modi from electioneering in bihar was not very palatable. worse was his refusal to accept the assistance offered by gujarat at the time of natural disaster. with clamour for modi growing stronger, he has seen this as an opportunity to get rid of bjp. it is very common of our politicians and others to raise the bogey of secularism when it suits their purpose. nitish needed bjp and hence it was not communal. now suddenly it has become so by projecting an individual as pm candidate, though not even informally it has been acknowledged by the party.

bjp should now be used to this dumping. it all started with mayawati with whom bjp shared power in up, six months at a time was the agreement. as soon six months were over, bsp walked out leaving bjp high and dry. in odisha, biju patnaik needed them but once he was firmly in saddle had no further use for it. the number of seats he would leave for bjp was the excuse. in karnataka, kumaraswamy played the same game as mayawati refusing to quit after his allotted time of two and a half years came to an end.

in odisha, bjp could not improve its performance after walking out of coalition(or rather dumped by bjd) but in karnataka, it captured power in the elections which followed due to impression of it being a victim of manipulation by jds. which model will apply to bihar, one does not know. but it is for certain that if jdu does not get majority of the seats from bihar in the lok sabha, (i.e. not enough seats to assume the role of king maker or a possible king, secularism and modi will cease to be the issue. it can only be hoped that bjp saw this coming and has been driving to have its base kept intact. but going by the past performance in uttar pradesh or odisha, this is not what happens. it is likely to cut a sorry figure in bihar. but as yet there is time and it can recoup its losses, provided it gives up its hopes of carrying along jdu. in india the sympathy factor far outweighs others. if bjp can project itself as the victim of manipulation by jdu, it will stand to gain.

as regards sympathy factor, we have numerous precedents in india. indira posed as the valiant fighter against the syndicate who were trying to eliminate her. the sympathy factor after assassination of rajiv gandhi won the day for congress which otherwise had no hope of survival. janata party won the sympathy wave due to the sufferings its members faced during the emergency. the history can repeat itself.


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