The hilarious pre accepted victory of the Bhartiya Janata Party in Gujarat for the fifth time in succession is undoubtedly a huge victory of the Indian prime minister Narendra Modi and Gujarat pride and subsequently a massive jolt to the opposition parties particularly the undisputed 24 year old leader of the Patidar community Hardik , Alpesh and Jignesh Mewani including the most vociferous and highly spirited new Congress president Rahul Gandhi who’d made it their prestige issue to ensure the BJP’s defeat in the state, come what may, ruled by the saffron party for the last twenty two years thinking that perhaps the anti incumbency factor may work. While this victory of BJP and the prime minister can be definitely termed as historic though having secured 99 seats too less than the previous terms tally but being the fifth consecutive triumph nobody can also deny the fact that the Congress Party under the Nehru Gandhi family scion has also proved his impressive mettle by improving the party’s vote share from 44% to 48 and enhancing the seats tally from previous 61 to the present impressive 80 despite all odds and the 132 year old party’s losing spree after the BJP led NDA assumed historic majority at the centre under the prime ministership of Modi.
Congress which is constantly losing at the hands of the BJP and Narendrs Modi in Gujarat for the last 19 years had 61 MLAs last time with 6 of them having defected to BJP including former CM Shanker Singh Vaghela ditching Congress and forming his own political outfit. The prime minister Narendra Modi and the national BJP chief Amit Shah after experiencing the Congress chief, then the Vice president Rahul Gandhi’s extensive campaigning after having roped in Hardik, Alpesh and Jignesh Mewani on his side had left no stone unturned to ensure that This anti BJP alliance in the state of Gujarat is defeated hands down. About more than 40 cabinet ministers, entire office bearers of the centre and states and volunteers from all over the country were roped in to campaign and use massive funds to ensure the party’s victory as the entire media of the country and even the world was analysing and viewing this election of Gujarat and Modi pride from close quarters and had connected it with the Modi victory in the 2019 general elections. While the hard hitting Congress chief Rahul Gandhi has held and addressed more than 36 meetings in the state literally giving up the Himalayan state Himachal Pradesh to BJP, the prime minister Narendra Modi and Amit Shah also addressed umpteen numbers of largely attended meetings and announced schemes worth of thousands of crores just before the implementation of the code of conduct by the Election Commission.
During the last phase of the campaigning when some of the channels started giving some credible mileage to Rahul and Congress the central and state BJP machinery geared itself to the maximum and countered the Rahul jaggernaut with full force finally standing triumphant for the fifth succesive term thus exposing the patidar leader Hardik, Alpesh Thakore and Jignesh Mewani as well. One should not forget that during his three and a half month’s tenure Modi held two summits with the Chinese president Xi Jingping and Japanese PM Shinzo Abe in Gujarat Ahmedabad and gave the Gujaraties a bullet train from Ahmedabad to Mumbai woth a whopping aid of 1.8 lakh crores inclusing direct flights from London and USA to Ahmadabad compounded with several high profile international projects.
All these achievements impressed fellow Gujaraties tremendously who voted for him enmasse expecting many more such projects to arrive in the near future. It may be recalled that having been the three term CM of the state of Gujarat and now PM of the largest democracy of the world Narendra Modi’ s charisma still exists in Gujarat and this result has amply made it clear. Modi has during his three years and eight months tenure captured 20/ 21 states of the country leaving the negligible 4 with the Congress. This constant winning spree has made it absolutely clear that his political and social charisma is fully intact and is all set for re election in 2019’s general elections. The Congress Vice president Rahul Gandhi will have to re galvanise and revitalise the party organisation at the centre and in states right up to the block level and should appear as a sole nucleus of the anti BJP opposition at the national level as individually countering the Modi effect seems to be entirely impossible in the present political scenerio. What do you say, friends?
SUNIL NEGI, PRESIDENT, UTTARAKHAND JOURNALISTS FORUM