EDITORIAL

2019 is a game wide open

Written by IWP

The Congress may not have emerged as the single largest party in the Karnataka election, but takes solace in the fact that its vote share was higher than that of the Bharatiya Janata Party.

The Congress had a 37.9 per cent vote share whereas the BJP had 36.2 per cent vote share. The Congress couldn’t convince its voters to choose us over the JD-S. And that is where it perhaps lost out some seats. Though the Karnataka elections, a true victory for the BJP, it might have emerged as the single largest party, but it has not won the simple majority in the state to be able to form the government in Karnataka.

The Congress as the principal Opposition party, need to look into where it went wrong despite getting a bigger vote share than the BJP. In fact, it need to focus on that.  However, after trying everything in their arsenal, right from a divisive narrative, to pushing through money, putting up corrupt candidates, the BJP has not managed to secure a space for themselves in vain.

This is something inindeed Congress needs to view as a silver lining for it in the election outcome. In every election the Congress learns how to get better with our work. The Congress does not have seats to show in terms of the vote share that the Congress has got. That could be because of micro level management.

But it could also be seen as that the Congress couldn’t convince its voters to choose it over the other alternative, the Janata Dal-Secular(JD-S). And that is where the Congress perhaps lost out some seats. Thus the Congress left that gap for the BJP to take advantage.

The Congress made a mistake by not having a pre-poll alliance with the JD-S. In hindsight, the Congress can look at its campaign and see what it could have done better. However, it believes that it gave a stable government to Karnataka and were successful.

While the Congress gave the state a chief minister for five years, though it provided Karnataka with development, the Congress also had a vision for the coming five years.

In terms of division of secular vote by the BJP promoted Mahila Empowerment Party and encouraging MIM like in UP, Bihar, Assam etc to weaken Congress mandate.

In terms of corruption, it saw there was no charge against the government and the Congress feels it gave a transparent government in the state. Somehow, the Congress believes that Karnataka has a tradition to change political parties every five years.

The Congress hopes to break that trend and create history, but it were left behind by a dozens of seats. It should be kept in mind that the BJP gave the Reddys an upper hands, who were accused of corruption, tickets. Even then, the Congress could not convince voters not to opt for the BJP. The Congress can not blame the voters. But fact remains that the voters share and the higher percentage of votes show that they chose the Congress over the BJP.

Corruption was an important issue as Karnataka was looted of Rs 35,000 crore (Rs 350 billion) upwards of its wealth (under the BJP rule). It is a big concern. But the voters became habitual of corruption and gave upper majority. However, the nation witnessed that the Karnataka exposed the BJP’s hollow claim on fighting corruption. They openly supported those people who were facing several cases of corruption.

The BJP also got the Central Bureau of Investigation to bring closure to the investigation.
This has exposed the BJP. It has not only hurt the electoral in Karnataka but it will hurt the nation in times to come.

The Lingayat among Hindus are not happy with the Congress party. From day one, while the Congress has been maintaining that the entire Lingayat issue was not on the basis of caste. But
Siddaramaiah had gone on record to say that the Congress may win or it may lose because of this, but it honoured its commitment it made to the community.

If a community endorses what they are seeking the Congress will ensure that as a government it will take a call on that. It was a long standing demand, the strongly believes. This is evident that Karnataka had seen a protest on this issue and even in Maharashtra there were protests as Lingayats have a sizeable population, which Congress deliberately ignored to read.

It believes the Lingayat demands were pre-date India’s Independence. It believes that it has to acknowledge it, respect it and honour it, that is how it fails to reach majic figure, 112. It is good that finally it played out for politically there remains something for it to bear.

The Congress was too dependent on Siddaramiah but it backfired. As a chief minister he was loved and admired by a lot of people in Karnataka. They also admired his leadership skill, but Godly cards that BJP played took fundamentalists among Hindus a surprise. Though he took Karnataka forward and gave a stable government by connecting with the masses.

The Congress was over-dependent. And it was unable to convert the vote share that it managed to get into the first-past-the-post system, which is what Indian democracy is based on. Now it is Modi versus every one in 2019. Take a look at how the BJP is losing out in Lok Sabha by-elections. Even in Karnataka, there is a huge difference in terms of seats for the BJP if you compare the 2014 election with this assembly election.

Now there is a huge lag. The Congress just needs to encash on that and build up from where they are lagging. As a whole, 2019 is a game wide open for fresh degree of mandate to be judged. It appers that what happened in the Vajpayee era will repeat in the Modi era in 2019.

The use of the God by BJP indirectly made the Congress party loses elections in every state. The BJP now rule 21 states and the Congress is optimistic about its chances in the 2019 general election.

The Congress inherently believes, India, it has been working for a liberal, inclusive, progressive system. This is the core Hinduism the Congress knows about it is fighting for.

The governments come and go, but the entire idea on which India is based is not going to die. The secular Indian parties like Congress leaders understand that there is a fundamental shift in the mindset of Hindu voters. This is evident from 38 per cent of the vote share in the basis of one single equation, but a commoner finds that it is hard to believe.

In fact the Congress party is the second largest party in the country gets votes from only one section of people, no body believes that. There can be an idea which is popular right now like a popcorn idea, but it will fade out shortly. As India is inherently an inclusive country; a country which is progressive and believes in the assimilation of every ethnicity, every religious group and every caste equation.

It may be an unpopular idea at this point of time, but it is a long living idea. India has survived earlier assaults as well and it will survive this assault as well.

Mr Modi in his election speeches in Karnataka said the Congress will be reduced to Punjab, Puducherry and the Nehru Parivar. This seems to be coming true. One can blame every Congress person for this election result. But it does not matter to the Congress.

As the Congress has failed, it has to be ready to take the blame, but RSS parivar dominates the country. There is only one parivar and that is the Sangh Parivar. That is the ideology the Congress is battling and it has to fight it till the very end.

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IWP

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