The recent elections results are testimony to the fact that dynamics of Indian politics is quickly changing. While BJP emerged as no. 1 political party in India, Congress is on the verge to lose its status of principal opposition party. Democracy has lots of benefits and better than any other form of governance but without a strong opposition, limited flaws of democracy will open and may potentially hurt growth of the country.
Here is the thing, we must try to understand this shift in Indian politics and its impact for the coming years. Let’s focus on the changing landscape of Indian politics what it means for political parties and people of India
- Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP)- As the result revealed, BJP has established itself as number one party far ahead from any other political party. They have everything at disposal required to succeed in Indian politics. A leadership group which is agile, hardworking, and visionary. A fantastic leader in Narendra Modi and many second in command leader like Yogi Adityanath, Amit Shah, Rajnath Singh etc. However, because of rapid expansion, they have inducted leaders from other political parties, and media Celebrities. Many of them are good for media attention but not for public work. They may have won election in the name of Modi but could have ideological differences with BJP core ideology. This has the potential to dilute BJP vision if these people grow in ranks in the organization. Another challenge BJP is having currently is breaking into the states where they have negligible presence like Kerala, Tamil Nādu, Andhra, Telangana among others. It’s not about winning elections in these states but it’s about having a formidable presence because then only, it can call itself a truly pan India party.
- Indian National Congress (INC)- Congress has lost 59 elections and won just 5 in last 7 years. Downfall of Congress is so steep and predictable that no one feels surprised on its performance. Before I come to my next point, let me tell you that this slide of Congress can lead to crisis in Indian Democracy. No. 2 position is up for grab in Indian politics however no single party have footprints across the country like Congress. AAP, TMC, SP are all regional parties and marred by dynasty politics and because of it they will never grow beyond a community and state. Enough of discussion already taken place on the reason of downfall of INC but however I feel its fall has only to do with leadership crisis. Gandhi family is not ready give up control over the party. Sycophants are given prominent position whereas meritorious individuals are forced to leave the party. As on today, I can see only Congress decimating into history.
- Samajwadi Party (SP)- Another party that potentially revived its fortune is SP. The increased vote share from 23% to 32% in latest UP elections and it’s a significant number in a large state. However, SP must be knowing that these are negative votes because people who cannot associate with BJP have no choice other than to vote for SP, because BSP and Congress are no longer player in UP politics. Secondly, SP has negligible presence outside UP. Do you know, they can win 20 to 25 MP’s seats in general election but are nowhere in position to claim principal opposition party post in Indian Politics. Thirdly, SP is a caste-based party heavily dependent on Yadav and Muslim votes. Because of their actions in the past, they will not be able break this perception and others will not accept SP their party to present at national or state level.
- Aam Admi Party (AAP)- For a party which is less than decade old, AAP already made a significant impression in Indian politics. After Delhi, AAP handsomely won Punjab elections. AAP leadership and strategist are masters in creating perception in the minds of the people. They already started feeding people with the thought of AAP being the new national alternative of BJP. Here is the thing, AAP has government in Delhi (not a full state) and in Punjab (a very small state), but you can see they started new campaigns trying to build a perception as if they have won elections in five or seven events. As I told you, AAP can replace Congress from no. 2 position in medium term because of having complete clarity on their go to people strategy. Contrary to popular perception, AAP is not fighting elections against BJP, they know congress leadership is weak and party is marred with infighting, hence they are positioning themselves as an alternative to Congress in the minds of voters. They know that Brand Modi is very strong, hence choose not to speak against Modi. BJP has reasons to worry because in Delhi, once AAP replaced Congress, they have not allowed BJP or any other party to bounce back to power in Delhi.
- Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP)- It will be unfair if we don’t talk about BSP. BSP was dominating UP politics a decade ago and had gained the stature of National Party. It successfully able to create foothold in multiple states like Punjab, Delhi, MP, Rajasthan, and Maharashtra but then it lost its narrative. Where did BSP lost the ground- “M” factor. The M (Mayawati) that driven BSP to power is slowly becoming burden on the party. The other M (Money) also played its part in downfall of BSP. Openly selling tickets for elections, Corruption while in government led the downfall of the party. Importantly it happened after it lost its ideological mentor, Shri Kanshiram. At all-time low and emergence of new leaders who are pursuing to champion Dalit cause, BSP journey in Indian politics looks extremely difficult. They are at crossroads of existential crisis.
- TMC, TRS, DMK, YSR Congress, BJD- India is home to regional political parties. Multi party dominated Indian politics for decades. India has political parties who are very strong in one state but don’t have any presence in other state. This makes things complicated for the opposition to put a united face against BJP. With the decline of Congress (the party who so far, the bridge between the opposition parties), there is no other political party which has appeal to unite this fragmented opposition of regional parties. We also must accept the fact that almost all the regional parties are dynastic parties where a deserving, meritorious individuals will find difficult to get recognition and grow till he decides to convert to Sycophants to the Dynast.
The conclusion is BJP is happily assured of number one political party for at next 3 to 5 years. Opposition parties Congress, SP, TMC, BSP, TRS, DMK and others will keep fighting for number two position, but AAP has surely in lead right now.
In nutshell Opposition has lost the narrative and their ignorance to read national mood is costing them big time. From so many years they are running a propaganda of hatred, religions, and caste but while voters have rejected it again and again, opposition parties seem to have buy into their own propaganda. It happens if you insist on something which is not there, ultimately you yourself end up buying into it.