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    Gujarat Election - Are BJP And Congress Ready To Learn Anything From Here?

    I always believed, a good bargain is when both parties leave the table little disappointed. Exactly what the recently concluded Gujarat state election results did. It made a good bargain with both the major political parties in the fray. While BJP emerged triumphant, it didn’t disappoint the Congress entirely, or so do they pretend. Nonetheless, Gujarati voters ultimately turned out smarter than the entire state political force put together, thereby getting what they wanted while sending a strong warning/message to the winners to stay put on the ground. I can’t recall any recent election that has resulted in fulfilling these two criteria as the Gujarat election did. Now it depends how the two political parties perceive the result and what they take away from here for future reference. But for that to happen, both these political outfits need to be graceful, both in defeat as well as win. Let’s see if they are up for it or not. 

    Moulding the facts on the ground to suit your political narrative seldom helps and none better than Congress knows this irony very well. Same could be said about BJP too. Over the years I have seen BJP being little accommodative about the facts on the ground after each election. It started after the 2009 drubbing and I am glad they are continuing with it even today. Evidence was the loss of Bihar election. Right after the results Amit Shah wasted no time in facing the media and answering tough and embarrassing questions. He didn’t even for once tried to change the facts on the ground. Rather he gladly admitted to have done a political mistake and vowed to look into the failure objectively for root cause. Is it same for Congress? Are they open to call a spade a spade and look objectively within after another loss and work towards fixing the lacunae? Doesn’t look like as one could find a missing Rahul Gandhi after the loss while a grossly unconvincing Ashok Ghelot attending the post results press conference of the party. What was stopping RG from being at the front and taking uncomfortable questions? Why send a sidekick that never had added any value to the party except his moroniry? 

    Only time perhaps would answer it convincingly but knowing Congress and their complete disinterest in admitting the facts, it is no brainer that they would hardly encourage any confidence in the voters of a possible course correction within the party. As I write it, there are many in the Congress party who are ferociously reluctant to admit that they have lost two states at the end of the day. For most, Congress and Rahul Gandhi have won it for them. How, nobody knows or cares to know. Perhaps decade’s long slavery has blinded them from many things, including self-respect and self-assertion. It is both bizarre and unbelievable when as a party Congress is so adverse to truth. Motto after the loss isn’t to learn anything from the loss but to defend the newly elected president of the party by any means. Does it anyway appear that Congress would take lessons from this loss? I, like most, doubt if they would.

    First case study of Congress as a party which would learn nothing is the tweet of P. Chidambaram. I haven't read anything more absurd than this for a long, long time. This is how Congress usually fails itself without any provocation. And they do it with alarming regularity. Being a senior leader PC was expected to be pragmatic with his analysis of the results. And this certainly is far from pragmatism. It is in fact plain playing ostrich. This is outright nonsensical banal that sounds so hilarious even if one considers it for pure academic purpose. Here was a state that had seen BJP for last 22 years. No doubt there was a huge undercurrent of political incumbency that BJP had to fight through. Coupled with that the civil movement, be it ‘Patidar’ agitation or the agrarian crisis that the state saw in last year and half. As if these weren’t enough, in all of this the most charismatic leader of the state and BJP was elevated for national duty at the centre. Harsh economic reforms of last one year was another anger brewing point within the vote base and the trader community alike. In nut-shell, it was all for Congress to take it. It would be unfair if we don't admit that 2017 was the best bet for Congress to come back to power in the state. But look where they ended up. After pitted against all odds BJP still could manage to stay in power and that too getting majority on its own. But how the biggies of Congress party interpret this rather humiliating loss of their party? They best could manage to churn out bogus literary work to defend their newly elected party head. Far from the truth and objectivity, majority in the party, not just PC, preferred to play Ostrich whole through the day. With a severely crippled and hilarious narrative they collectively managed to produce only some high grade garbage. How enigmatic their collective output was could be gauge from the fact that they in toto ended up being a laughing stock. I didn’t come across a single congress-man who offered to admit that it was a loss even when odds were heavily stacked in favour. If this isn’t good enough to be classified as stupidity then I am not sure what else could be. 

    Another exit path for most in Congress and their cohorts in media and other liberal circle was the failed attempt at denouncing BJP’s surprising victory against all odds as something that is not new. Comparison charts against the erstwhile Jyoti Basu CPI government were drawn. I feel this stupid comparison must be swayed away as soon as possible because there aren’t any similarities between the left government of Bengal and BJP’s government in Gujarat. The similarities end at the timeframe level only. First thing; left didn’t have governments in many states when JB ruled Bengal for 34 years. Hence the fault lines of the party couldn’t be drawn beyond the performance in Bengal or at best Kerala. Look in contrast what BJP had to manage now. Even the smallest thing happening in any BJP ruled state was/is and perhaps would continue to be questioned both at the state as well as the central level. Questions even were asked in other BJP ruled states as well. Thanks to our utterly tout media, nothing could leave from the purview of an episodic outrage across all BJP ruled circles irrespective of them being relevant or not. This is another point that JB was shielded from. There wasn’t any constant glare at JB or his party’s performance. Our media back then was quite happy juggling around the Delhi Durbar for their sound-bites. None cared two hoots on what is happening in Bengal or for that matter in any state. And as is, our media was always full with 'Jholawala chap' Commies. Is it the same that Gujarat and Modi had to endure for last decade and half? Was our media equally in love with Modi as they were with Jyoti Da? Of course not. As CM JB never went under any kind of scrutiny unlike Modi who even was questioned on the colour of his Kurta he wore for a particular event. No one can recall a single instance when JB had to answer why he didn’t put on the skull cap he was offered at an event. There were no subversion of state and central machinery to organize vindictive politics against JB as is the case with Modi. So where this laughable comparison came from is beyond me.

    Coming back to the hammerhead Congress members and their complete disinterest in reading the writings on the wall – second case study is the ever moronic Sanjay Jha. Like Rahul Gandhi, this creature too never fails to amaze me. I don’t quite fathom what this particular wretched tweet means or if at all it makes any sense. But what I am sure is that there can’t be any worse example of one attempting at lampooning his/her own intellect than this moronic tweet. Stupidity is quite natural with SJ and we aren’t going there but what should catch our attention here is the lose manner in which Most ‘Congressi’ use the word ‘victory’. It simply isn’t just misplaced it is totally out of context as well. At the end of the day Congress turned out to be losers in two states and managed to shrink their ever shrinking pan India presence but morons in the party take the joy in throwing nonsensical and meaningless prophases. At best Gujarat was a comparatively better show of the party in recent times and it is genuine to take hearts from the outcome but to call yourself a victor when you have lost it is worse than self-consolation. It is outright hara-kiri that most in Congress are habituated of doing. And they do it quite deliberately when it is totally avoidable. I mean, how one in sane mind could take joy in a defeat and call himself/herself a winner amidst humiliating defeat is just beyond me. Not just me, it would be beyond most sane people of the world. Perhaps losers take joy in their losses and that is why one calls them ‘losers’ to begin with.

    Now to BJP and what they should learn from this wrapper thin margin win. It was for them to lose and they almost managed to get there. Celebrations apart I would prefer the leadership of the party won’t miss the subtle nuances that the voters tried to pass on alongside the victory result. And that nuance is – wake up, smell the coffee and dare you take voters lightly or for granted next time. This is a wake-up call for 2019 for sure. I have been writing since last one year on how BJP had completely betrayed the vast middle class that brought them to power in 2014. Poor do matter and they always should but that shouldn’t translate to a stand that middle class are worthless sect of voters that need no attention once votes are done. Middle class had huge aspiration from the Modi government but unfortunately once in power this particular section is wilfully neglected by the Modi government. They haven’t done anything for the middle class in last 3 and half years. Multiple times in the past I had urged Narendra Modi to pan his attention on the section that persistently has voted for him and BJP. But for some reason that I quite can’t logically lay out, Narendra Modi has preferred to look the other way. I even had warned how middle class would react to this apathy sooner than later. Hope the decreased urban vote share this time around would wake Modi ji from his self-inflicted slumber. 

    People, mainly middle class, has huge aspirations from the current BJP government and Modi ji must take pride on the fact that so many people are pinning their hopes on him to deliver. It is time that Modi ji realizes that deliberately neglecting his strength would render him weak and that too in a very quick time. He and his government has to act in a direction that would address few of the aspirations, if not all, of this huge, huge middle class. Any failure in doing so would result in massive dissatisfaction and I would be surprised if it won’t end up at BJP kissing goodbye to the 2019 elections. Gujarat results precisely threw this possibility out on the open. In a way the middle class tried to shout ‘hello’ to draw Modi ji’s attention towards them with the result. For starters this government must try their best to give some major relief in direct taxation this year. This budget session should leave a major chunk of this middle class with a smile, a sense of relief and a bundle of hope. It is not an option for Modi government to miss this year’s budget to sooth the anxious nerves of those who run this country with their tax money. The middle class which pays through its nose to supply the adequate mullah for the country to run must not be made to feel like criminals. In the name of welfare measures for poor this paying section must not be relegated to non-entities. 

    As I said earlier, dare Modi ji or his government try to play with the patience of the middle class any further. They haven’t done a single thing for them yet and they better should resurrect this mistake at the earliest.

    In the mean time I hope, against the hope, that Congress too would resurrect themselves if they wish to remain relevant in Indian politics in future. Playing ostrich won’t change the facts on the ground but it certainly would push you to oblivion as Congress today finds itself to its despair. Sycophants won’t win you elections as they aren’t since last 5 years at least. And the first step towards the direction of course correction would be to be graceful enough to admit – we lost a simple battle where odds were heavily in favour of us to win. And please, ask the jokers who were flocked with you to stop blabbering on EVM tampering. This sounds so moronic and wolf cry that it begs immediate slapping of the jokers left-right-and-centre; quite literally this time.                 

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