A confused and divided BJP, which was riding high following the big victory in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections and consecutive wins in the Assembly elections in four states, has been steamrolled by the two-year-old Aam Aadmi Party in the Delhi Assembly elections. Aam Aadmi Party led by Arvind Kejriwal saw amazing victory in Delhi Elections 2015. BJP has to face a big failure while congress got a clean sweep. Modi’s wave did not worked in Delhi Elections. What actually happened that uplifted Kejriwal’s AAP and thrashed Modi’s BJP? It seems obvious that the Obama’s chemistry and Bedi’s entry did not pay well for BJP. Narendra Modi has been defeated by a man who is comparatively a novice in politics.
BJP failed to appease Delhi when they ignored the promises made in Lok Sabha Elections. India is democratic country and they have the right to demand an answer. Nobody is spared in a democracy. Being eight months in power and not being able to deliver anything to improve lives of people in the capital was a failure that had to payback. The BJP roped in 120 MPs, including several Central Ministers and chief ministers to target AAP and Kejriwal but the plan failed and instead back-fired on the party itself.
PM Narendra Modi, who addressed five rallies in the national capital, kept on accusing Kejriwal of not doing enough without coming up with his party’s blueprint for the national capital. Modi and BJP leaders called Kejriwal anarchist, Naxals, bhagoda and dharna expert which sent out the message that the party was only interested in name calling. They also asked Kejriwal 35 questions on U-turns made by him on his poll promises and targeting him for leaving the government in 49 days. But when Kejriwal called the party for a debate, BJP CM candidate Kiran Bedi said that they would debate in the Delhi Assembly. On the contrary, the biggest strength of Arvind Kejriwal is his impeccable research.
He always has his data within his reach and comes up with convincing answers to every question asked. This also leads to better decision making and also gives an impression of being someone who knows what he is talking about. Kejriwal learnt from its mistakes. Their manifesto and campaigning was a lot more matured and clear as compared to the last elections. Again, Kejriwal didn’t try to escape from the set of questionnaire as to why he resigned the post. BJP dithered on an election manifesto which gave a signal to Delhi that party leaders were not sure of the agenda. Making it worse, an over enthusiastic Bedi tweeted her own 25-point project for Delhi without consulting her party and it resulted in her party belatedly coming out with a vision document for the national capital. What added salt to the recipe was calling people from North East as ‘immigrants’ in their vision document.
From top to bottom, all BJP leaders only targeted the AAP and Kejriwal, and did not focus on any local issue which concerned the common Delhiite. Even the four rallies addressed by Modi a week before elections saw meager crowd wherein he did not address any local issue or lay down the development plan for the national capital. On the other hand, the AAP’s campaign was more mature focusing of local issues like water, electricity, corruption, inflation and women security. The BJP, however, failed to read the mood of the people for whom not the allegations but the basic necessities matter the most. Safety of women is a major issue in Delhi that saw no improvement in this facet while high security arrangements was seen prior to and during the American president’s visit. Another such instance that could have left the mob doubtful is the 10 lakh suit monogrammed with PM Modi’s name.
Modi failed to control his own MPs who were allegedly forcing people to convert into Hinduism across the country and calling it ‘Ghar Wapsi’ created a lot of anger amongst the people. He also failed to curb attacks on Church hurting the sentiment of Christians which resulted in the alienation of voters. His MPs also went on to the extent of asking Hindu women to produce four children, 10 children in order to protect the religion. They are more interested in promoting Hindutva rather than development in India which should be the core agenda.
Seeing the mood of the people who were moving towards the AAP, BJP President Amit Shah inducted former IPS officer Kiran Bedi to take on Kejriwal but the plan failed and she lost from the party’s stronghold constituency Krishna Nagar. Instead of naming a long time party worker as the CM candidate, Kiran Bedi, an outsider was brought to stand against AAP.
Kiran Bedi’s entry into BJP saw more controversy than enthusiasm. The coming in of new faces, sidelining of old-timers and declining them ticket resulted in fierce infighting within the party which was already badly divided. The situation turned worse as party workers carried out protest outside Delhi unit office and some of them contested as Independents leading to division of votes. Her tweets against Modi and her sudden approval of him were seen as her being an opportunist. AAP had a strong contender as Arvind Kejriwal. They were very much determinant on their CM candidate. People have lost their hopes from Congress and thus congress vote bank also shifted to AAP. The loyal minority and slum area votes shifted totally to AAP and BJP was not able to gain in minority areas due to division of votes.
Delhi assembly election results once again highlight that Indian politics is very volatile and unpredictable. Overconfidence of BJP made them face a huge loss of just 3 seats among 70. While AAP’s changed attitude, hard work, strategies and their vision for a clean and corruption free Delhi took them to 67 seats. AAP’s win is a glory of democracy. Hopefully, promises will be fulfilled and new government will take Delhi to new heights.