From Modi to Rahul to Amit Shah to Yogi to Sonia Gandhi to Chidambaram – all made a minimum of one round of campaign at key constituencies here in Karnataka. After this high voltage campaign in the state, what are the chances of the ruling Congress party winning these elections again on May 15th of 2018?
There is no huge anti-incumbency factor here in Karnataka as the Siddaramaiah Govt ruled only for 1 term here. So, it’s more like a fresh election again.
Setting aside all the emotional aspects of “Who is good/ Who is bad?”, here is a fact check on the possible outcome of polling, especially fortunes for the Congress party with five clear indicators why Congress would lose these elections.
Dedicated party workers who go all-out and door to door will ensure the party’s manifesto reach voters. This is still a traditional method- but this will decide the marginal swing of voters who decide the actual winner. Thankfully, this % is very less and usually, in key contests, this can be less than 5% of total voters who decide the winner. Those who catch these “swinging” voters and convince them are the winners. This is majorly the case when there is no major anti-incumbency factor looming around.
Where do Congress and BJP stand in campaign style?
Congress workers have hardly any leader in a group and if these workers face the voters, they are usually incommunicado while questions are posed at them. Most of these voters are paid and they are hapless and waiting for the daily wages at the end of the day. The door to door connection is missing totally with Congress when it comes to catching these swinging voters.
Do the workers have access to local Congress leaders? No- the leaders are all busy getting close to the first family to chart out ministerial berths after elections are won!!
Where is BJP? They have a strong dedicated unpaid and self-motivated force of volunteers who can face the voters and answer their questions. This is one of the major force with BJP. You can call it RSS or any unpaid organization- but this is a major force behind BJP’s successive victories in the whole of India.
2. Social Media:
Congress found a big gap here when it comes to Social media and IT Cell. President Rahul Gandhi found this as one of the reasons for its continuous failure in all the states- elections by-elections. But how many voters follow what is written in Twitter or Facebook and vote based on it? Are those the ones in the marginal Swinging category?
The study has shown that not even 1% of voters decide their votes based on social media. Undoubtedly the IT Cell of Congress (Spearheaded by Divya Spandana) is par excellent while rebutting allegations against the party and especially if any allegations are made on the First Family.
We have seen many projects getting started during elections and getting completed before the voting day. We call it election gimmick. This is true all over the world and accepted too – especially by voters who want to see at least some development projects in front of their eyes- may it be for votes or otherwise.
But, surprisingly, this may be the first case in Karnataka where projects were started 4-5 months ago and are half completed even today on voting day. A classic example is the white topping of 2-way roads in Bangalore and tier-2 cities. One half is done and waiting to dry whereas the other half is still un-topped. This is crazy !! There are also some “Paid” workers who are asking voters “The other half of the road will be white-topped only if you vote for Congress again!!”. With both the BBMP of Bangalore and State Govt in its control, Congress leaders couldn’t even ensure completion of projects that were started to win the voters. This will be a major eye-opener for the voters on the inefficiency of Congress party.
4. No alliance with Non-BJP parties:
Deve Gowda is a tough guy!! Understood- but Siddaramaiah’s old rivalry with the Gowda senior has been the only blocker here for an alliance with JDS. Else, Congress could have had an alliance and could have beaten BJP easily. When SP & BSP can join hands, why not Congress and JDS? Underestimating the strength of BJP with a decision go all alone and first family’s failure to convince Siddaramaiah closed the doors for possibly such a deadly combination.
5. A poorly played “Religion card”:
More than BJP, this time, Congress has played the religion and minority card- that too in a very low IQ. Please open the manifesto of Congress. There is an attempt to divide the majority community into two in the case of Lingayaths and at the same time, there are huge sops for Minorities- especially only to Muslims. Party’s intentions to make Lingayaths a separate religion was not with good intentions at all. Lingayaths are neither backward nor poor. But now, after this move, Lingayaths are more vigilant. If they vote for Congress, they may have to face the wrath of Hindus for getting separated from the Majority !!
Special sops only for Muslims!!!
Why not to Hindus or Christians? Agreed, Shadi Bhagya, Arabic college grants are done. Its fine- it is OK. Once done- all well.
Now again, there are similar controversial schemes aimed only at hapless Muslims to further divide and keep them far from Hindus and Christians!!
Now, looks at this- “Special Maulana Azad Schools to ensure children of Madrasas don’t fail in regular exams !!” What kind of a policy is it? Why not to those in Vedic Schools or Yoga schools or for those nuns and priests? Why only for Muslim students?
One more master blaster plan is- “Special insurance for Auto drivers only for Minority communities”- not even for Hindu SC/ST’s!! Why do I call it a low IQ policy? If Congress had put up a plan for Insurance for Auto Drivers- without a religious bias, it would have been still a popular policy. Again, auto drivers of the minority community have to bear the wrath of other communities for no mistake of theirs !! It’s strange to see that Congress wants to keep the Muslims away from Majority Hindus by giving all these sops and thus invite the wrath of Majority on Muslims!!
It’s just like giving grace marks to only a section of students in class, that too not on merit, will the rest of the class sit quiet? Once or twice, its fine. But not always. Today’s students will ask to replace the teacher and some may seek revenge on the section of students too !! Overall manifesto reads to me “Congress is there only for Minorities and we have taken for granted the Majority of voters who are Hindus!!”. Therefore, it’s a low IQ and manifesto is doomed to fail and will not impress the majority of voters who are Hindus.
Voters’ awareness has been underestimated by Congress this time. It’s quite possible that Congress may be routed here in Karnataka and those who are traditionally Pro-Congress, this time, be prepared to have a better excuse than “JDS is BJP’s B Team” or “EVMs were tampered” or “Innocent voters were carried away by Modi’s false promises”. We may see a huge win for BJP.
Social Activist, Bangalore ([email protected])