May 23, 2019

Eclipse of the Congress

BJP’s expected victory in Assam in collaboration with AGP and Bodo parties obviously marks the virtual eclipse of the Congress. The Dynasty is sinking and it’s just a matter of time the Congress will be either passé or just be happy playing second fiddle to regional parties for its symbolic existence.

Having burned its fingers earlier in Delhi and Bihar, the BJP fortunately did its home work right this election in Assam  tasting sweet victory. There are several factors that added to BJP’s advantage. With Muslim population touching 35 percent mark, fuelled mostly by large-scale illegal immigration from Bangladesh, BJP became the rallying point for the majority community simmering with the demographic scare. Moreover, projecting strong local face Sarbananda Sonowal as Chief Minister was a sound political move – which the party had forgot to do in Bihar.

Well, I think the Assam victory or the gradual Withering away of the Congress from country’s political arena should not make BJP complacent.  The party still has formidable adversaries in the form of regional parties.

Let’s start from West Bengal. Post 2014 historic Narendra Modi victory, BJP did nothing to gradually strengthen its organizational base. The party high command had no time to rejuvenate the stale structure headed by a somewhat sedate Rahul Sinha who led the BJP in WB for over six years. By the time the party realized the mess it was too late. Sinha was replaced by dynamic Dilip Ghosh only some months before the election. The new incumbent Ghosh had little time to clear the organizational mess left by Sinha.

“It’s as if the party high command never had the inclination to politically lock horns with ruling TMC. Many federal ministers were seen praising TMC leader and chief minister Mamata Banerjee while attending various state sponsored meetings and business conclaves”, complained Bunibroto Dasgupta, a state BJP activist and Prabhari BJP Samvad of WB.

Analysts say the BJP never played the Hindu Card considering the fact that all its three adversaries – TMC, CPM & and Congress –wooed minorities blatantly.

Somehow BJP seemingly messed up its prospect in WB. It’s been doing the same in neighboring Odisha too by virtually outsourcing the state to the whims of PNG minister Dhrmendra Pradhan. Ironically, Pradhan who is a Rajya Sabha Member from Bihar, himself lacks a constituency. And look at this, president Amit Shah & Co believe that he is the right choice to dismantle the strong electoral base of ruling Biju Janata Dal and its Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on his fourth term. Fantasy does provide kick but must have a limit. The BJP ought to realize that it cannot win anything politically with Pradhan at helm no matter what he does as a federal minister.

The example of Odisha was contextual to prove how BJP’s  plans to take on the regional satraps were faulty. The right choices, despite being there to do justice to BJP’s electoral prospects, are still being marginalized for no rhyme or reason.

It’s time for the BJP to do a brain storming session meant to have a clear cut agenda to fight and vanquish the  left of the centre regional parties surviving on anti- Hindu rhetoric. They ought to depend on real talent and not sycophants for the job.

(To be Continued).

About Pratap Mohanty 1 Article
Writer & Journalist