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July 2018 Edition of Power Politics is updated.         June 2018 Edition of Power Politics is updated.
Issue:May' 2018

POST-BY POLLS SCENE

BJP sleepless

K S Chawla


BJP president Amit Shah with Shiromani Akali Dal patriarch Parkash Singh Badal and SAD chief Sukhbir Singh Badal in Chandigarh
Following its humiliating defeat in the recent bypolls to the Assembly seats and four Lok Sabha seats, the BJP leadership is in a state of big shock. The duo-Prime Minister Narendra Modi-ruling party president Amit Shah has decided to meet the allies of the NDA and mend fences with them.

Out of the four Lok Sabha seats, the BJP won only one seat while other three seats were bagged by the opposition alliance and most important seat of Kairana in UP has gone to the RLD) Rashtriya Lok Dal) headed by Ajit Singh. The Samajwadi party, BSP and Congress extended support the RLD.

Similarly, out of eleven Vidhan Sabha seats the BJP could get only one seat while Congress bagged four seats and JMM two seats and RJD also won one seats. This way the unity of the Congress and regional parties has shattered the dream of the BJP of securing 300 seats in 2019 Lok Sabha elections. Congress and JD(S) also thwarted the BJP plan to have hold on Karnataka.

In view of the emerging scenario, Amit Shah has already started the tour of the states. He has visited Mumbai and met the estranged Shiv Sena leadership and tried to sort out the differences. Shiv Sens leaders have been talking in strong language for the past some time and giving shock treatment to the BJP. Amit Shah also met some film actors and sought thei cooperation in 2019 elections. AMit Shah has also gone to Yoga guru turned businessman Baba Ram Dev and sought his support. Ramdev who is a very clever guy has managed to get the land in Noida for which Yogi Aditya Nath was not agreeing.

On June 7 the BJP President arrived in Chandigarh to meet Shiromini Akali Dal patriarch Parkash Singh Badal to seek his support and sort out differences between the two alliance partners – BJP and the SAD. Akali Dal led by Parkash Singh Badal and party president Sukhbir Singh Badal accorded red carpet welcome to Amit Shah.

BJP leaders are having sleepless nights after their party’s recent debacle in eleven Assembly seats and four Lok Sabha seats and its failure to capture power in Karnataka. The BJP was hoping to expand its base in the southern states.


The Akali Dal leaders have been having differences with the national BJP leadership. The Akali Dal leaders have been having the grouse that during the SAD-BJP rule in Punjab, the BJP leadership particularly Prime Minister Narendra Modi, did not treat Parkash Singh Badal well. He was not given the place which senior Badal deserved.


During the meeting between Parkash Singh Badal, Sukhbir Singh Badal and other senior Akali leaders they told Amit Shah that the Sikhs had not got justice for the 1984 anti-Sikh riots the demand for special package for Punjab was not accepted and Punjab faced serious financial crisis. The farmers were ignored completely with the result that the agricultural economy of the state has been destroyed and hundreds of farmers have committed suicides. The process of farmers suicides is still continuing.

The Akali Dal leadership is keen on reviving the panthic agenda to restablish its contact with the committed Sikhs or what is known as Taksali Akalis and has suggested swapping of Lok Sabha seats. The BJP quota of three Lok Sabha seats out of 13 Lok Sabha seats in Punjab. BJP has Amritsar, Hoshiarpur and Gurdaspur. Now Akali Dal wants to swap Amritsar seat with Ludhiana Lok Sabha seat.

Amritsar is considered panthic seat as the headquarters of the Akali Dal used to be Amritsar and SGPC offices are also located in Amritsar. The Akali Dal has already moved its headquarters. It has constructed a beautiful office in Chandigarh during the SAD-BJP regime. BJP has also constructed its offices at Chandigarh.

Lalu’s son Tejaswi is gaining ground. He has established his hold on the RJD rank and file and his party has gained strength, notwithstanding the fact that Lalu Prasad has been convicted in the fodder scam cases. It is causing pain to Nitish Kumar. The BJP has not conceded the demand of special package to Bihar .

Amritsar, Hoshiarpur and Gurdaspur have been with the BJP and earlier Jansangh for more than four decades. Amritsar has returned stalwarts of the stature of Dr. Baldev Parkash and Gurdaspur Yagya Dutt Sharma. The alliance between the AkaliDal and the Jansangh (now BJP) started in 1967 when the first non-Congress Government was formed in Punjab in 1967 under the leadership of retired justice Gurnam Singh who was the first Chief Minister of the Non-Congress Government in Punjab.

The Jansangh withdrew from the government in 1970 when Parkash Singh Badal was the Chief Minister over the language issue. Again in 1977 when there was SADJanata Party government in Punjab with Parkash Singh Badal, the Janata Party fell out with the Akali Dal. Janata Party consisted of Jansangh, Socialists and Republican Party. Both times, the coalition government failed to complete full term of five years. It was only in 1997-2002 that the SAD-BJP government completed five years term and then two full terms 2007 to 2017.

The national BJP leaders are having sleepless nights after the debacle of eleven Assembly seats by poll and four Lok Sabha seats and its failure to capture Karnataka – BJP was hoping to expand its base in the Southeren states with its victory of Karnataka. BJP’s troubles are not going to end with the visit of Amit Shah to Punjab. The situation in Bihar is also becoming complex. Lalu’s son Tejaswi is gaining ground. He has established his hold on the RJD rank and file and his party has gained strength, not withstanding the fact that Lalu Prasad has been convicted in the fodder scam cases. The popularity of the RJD is on the surge. It is causing pain to Nitish Kumar. The BJP has not conceded the demand of special package to Bihar.

The success of the combined opposition in the recent by polls has given much strength to it. Above all, the Congress has also conceded the fact that it has to play a second fiddle to oust Modi from the political scene. Although it is not an east task, the majority Hindu vote is still with Modi and opposition is dependent on the strength of the minorities and Dalits. The country is poised for a big political upheaval.