3 June 2009


Various political parties are pondering the results of general elections 2009. One thing that is clear is that the people of India have given the Congress a mandate for a stable government to carry out economic reforms and improve the security environment of the country. Do not forget that the mandate is also for its social commitment policies like NREGA and other quota policies in education and employment.Well i am not going to analyze about the victory of the congress, rather i want to write about the principal opposition party, the BJP.

One can say very confidently that when the election process started few months back, it was the BJP camp that was bubbling with confidence. Mind the word confidence,it was not over confidence like 2004. The BJP had put up shri L K Advani as its Prime ministerial candidate. It came to the field with issues ranging from security, economic recession, afzal guru, black money, price rise etc.All these issues were directly or indirectly affecting the common man in one or the other form. But i was literally shocked to see that the party had performed worst than what any congress supporter would have thought in his dreams.

I stongly feel the common man failed to realize that the performance of the government from 2004-09 was below average, if not bad. Its performance was way behind that of NDA's 99-2004. The security, infrastructure and price raise were the three issues on which the government failed so miserably. Yet the people of India gave a mandate which it never deserved. Pro congress supporters keep lobbying that the people were too happy with the performance and wanted Dr Manmohan singh's government to carry forward the legacy. Its all scrap.

The simple fact is that the as the principle opposition party the BJP failed to take the issues to the people through its core support base. The use of internet, blogs,orkut and twitters simply do not work in indian elections. I was also one of the culprits in joining shri Advani's orkut community and wrote few blogs for him. The lesson that needs to be learnt is that the indian elections is all about field work in which the late pramod mahajan was a master. Iam sure the BJP is missing him very badly.

The important set of people, culprits sound too hard are the second rung leaders of the BJP. In the year 2004 and later, everbody in the BJP was proud over the fact that under Shri Vajpayee and Shri Advani, there were so many second rung leaders. All of them were simply outstanding in various roles that were assigned to them in governement and the party. But today the situation seems to be going from bad to worse. All of a sudden the second rung leadership seems to have become over ambitious and are criss crossing in other's domain very badly. The overall effect is they have badly damaged the party's image and reputation as party with a difference.

These second rung leaders should have been pillars of strength to the party and each should have cultivated a base for them in their respective state. But every few are worth for it and where ever they are, the party base has seen a constant decline.The best example are the states of Delhi and Uttar pradesh. In UP the party was in power at a high and over the years the decline has been so bad that it is in the fourth position, a position even behind the congress. I would even suggest that the BJP should give the state leadership of UP to Varun Gandhi if none of the second rung leadership is motivated enough to work for its revival.

In Delhi leaders like sushma swaraj, arun jaitley do not want to take over the reins and give a fight against the congress. They are happy to be in delhi, sit in the party's Ac rooms and keep addressing the media. In ground the party has continuously lost ground and seems nowhere in getting back to power.

In Rajasthan, the party came to power under Vasunundhara Raje with a thumping mandate. 5 years of total misgovernance has cost them dear and this state has been a important factor in the debacle of 2009 Lok sabha elections. The BJP is now about to overtake the congress which was once famous for infighting. Now the congress leaders are completely rallying behind the gandhi family and the resounding victories in many elections has eclipsed many infightings.

Another important issue where the BJP is not paying any attention is in improving its base in the southern states. I mean the states of tamil nadu, kerala and Andhra pradesh. I fail to understand why important roles are not given to S Thirunavukarasar in TN. He is one of the few leaders who has a clean image in the state. Loosing Rangarajan kumaramangalam was an unfortunate turning point in the history of BJP in TN. The party can get a vote share and seats only if it puts up some famous personalities. They should not rule out taking the help of film personalities also. Same applies for Andhra pradesh and kerala too.

None can deny the fact that Narendra Modi is here to play a stellar role in national politics in the coming years. Any groupism and infighting will surely spoil the vote bank which the party may gain by projecting him as the next leader. The RSS and sangh parivar must also realise that a cordial relationship between all these outfits will only bring the core votebank back to BJP. They must help the BJP in bringing the much needed discipline in the second rung leadership. A time bound action will only revive the fortunes of the safron party.

If the same infighting continues then the rule of TINA(There Is No alternative) will come into play. This policy is neither good for the country nor for its democracy.

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