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Published On: Mon, Dec 18th, 2017

Saffron BJP did not turn out to be a comfortable victory in Gujrat

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pm-modi-amit-shah-bjp-hq-afp_650x400_81513603349NEW DELHI / AHMEDABAD : The BJP is set to form a government in the State by bagging 99 seats in the two-phase Assembly polls. However, it has got a reduced majority, with the Congress managing to get 77 seats.
For the BJP, Gujarat did not turn out to be a comfortable victory as predicted by the exit polls. The saffron party, which managed to retain power in its home turf, had to face a tough fight from the Congress.
Rahul Gandhi, who was elected the President of the Congress last week, had aggressively campaigned for the elections hoping for a better show in the home state of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. His efforts have paid off as the Congress managed to secure 77 seats – 16 more than the last Assembly election (2012).

Whereas, the BJP managed to cross a little over the halfway mark of 92 in the 182 Assembly seats by winning in only 99 constituencies. The incumbent party had secured 115 seats in Gujarat in 2012.

BJP President Amit Shah, however, termed the Gujarat election result a ‘triumph’ for the BJP. He said the BJP won in Gujarat comfortably, adding that the party’s vote share has increased. “It was not a close contest at all,” he added.” Shah said, adding that this is a “victory of development over dynasty and polarisation  However, a drastic fall in seat sharing is a major setback to the BJP and Modi.WhatsApp Image 2017-12-18 at 125326 PMjpeg
The second half of this year saw the rise of three young leaders in Gujarat – Hardik Patel, Jignesh Mevani and Alpesh Thakor. While Mevani won from Vadgam, Thakor grabbed the Radhanpur seat, one of the largest constituencies in Gujarat.

Modi’s change in the agenda of election campaign shows that he had realised Dalit lawyer-activist Mevani, Patidar quota agitation leader Hardik and OBC leader Thakor were going to be a challenge to the BJP. During the election campaigns in the state, the Prime Minister ditched the ‘Gujarat model’ of development, which he had touted so proudly during the 2014 Lok Sabha polls.
Modi shifted his focus from development to attacking the Congress. He went on to accuse former prime minister Manmohan Singh and veteran leader Mani Shankar Aiyar of conspiring with Pakis

So how did Gujarat manage to fight off anti-incumbency and retain their bastion of Gujarat having been in power for 22 years? The most obvious answer is their front man, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, but there was more to this than Modi.

The BJP Parliamentary board has decided that Arun Jaitley and Saroj Pandey will go as observers to Gujarat. Nirmala Sitharaman and Narendra Singh Tomar will go to Himachal Pradesh.

“BJP won with money power.” That was Patidar leader Hardik Patel’s first reaction to the Gujarat poll results. The 24-year-old leader who had a pre-poll arrangement with Congress, claimed “In some Patidar-dominated areas where BJP won with thin margin, it’s because of EVMs.”(With Agency Inputs ).

 

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