BJP’s victory in Indian polls credited to policy of inclusion

Kathmandu, December 29: Journalists and author of the book ‘How the BJP Wins: Inside India’s Greatest Election Machine,’ said Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s metamorphosis into a ‘vikas purus’ (champion of development), BJP’s attempt to transform it as an inclusive party and Modi’s ability to form multi-class coalitions  were the major factors behind the impressive recent electoral victories of BJP in  India.

Addressing a talk programme organised at Nepal-Bharat  Library here today on contemporary Indian politics moderated by journalist and author Aditya Adhikari, Jha said charisma of Modi, robust party organisation under party Chair Amit Shah, attempt to reach out to Dalits and OBCs and sub-casts of these groups, attempt to pamper the egos of Hindus were the major factors that led to BJP’s win  in the provincial elections, but it would be too early to guess  that this current wave of BJP win would replicate in the 2019 general elections. He said 19 Indian states were now being ruled by the saffron party.

Jha also said that the BJP cadres were smart in bringing the maximum number of voters out to the polling station on the voting day.

Jha said the BJP was focusing on winnablity of the party and    ruthlessly denying tickets to candidates that it thought wouldn’t win the elections.  Jha said Modi was keeping poll pledges, but had failed to address the problems of unemployment and rural distress, including the woes of farmers who were not getting right prices for their products. He said Modi faces the challenges of electrifying all households by 2018 and building houses for the very poor people.

“BJP tries to win the support of invisible sections of marginalised communities. It told other Dalits of UP that if Mayawati won, only Jatav caste will benefit,” he said.  “All political leaders lie and Modi is no different,” Jha said in response to a question.  He said Modi and BJP were trying to give a message that BJP was aggressively a nationalist party and the Indian National Congress was weak on the nationality issue. He said Modi’s party portrayed surgical strike against Pakistan as BJP’s achievement.  Jha said as a Nepali journalist in Delhi, he was always welcomed by people and it was also because they thought that he had no bias towards any party.

Journalist and author Adhikari said Jha had presented his analytical views in the book “How BJP Wins: Inside India’s Greatest Election Machine,” but without favouring any side or being biased against anybody. Adhikari asked Jha what were the factors that gave BJP one after another victories in provincial elections, how Modi was using information technology to reach out to electorates and how the chemistry between Modi and Shah was working.

Ambassador of India to Nepal Manjeev Singh Puri gave away a token of appreciation to both Jha and Adhikari. Puri said he was glad to hear Jha say he was always welcomed or even more welcomed as a Nepali national. “I am happy to hear this. This is what my country is,” he added.