Assembly elections 2017 in five states of Goa, Punjab, Manipur, Uttrakhand and Uttar Pradesh (UP) concluded recently have given opportunities to the political pundits to make political, social and economic analysis. May these analysis be independent or aligned to a particular thinking of the Left, Right, Socialistic or Centrist. Each party has a team of ‘pundits’ affiliated to it.
However, while appreciating the spirit of democracy, every one has to accept the mandate of the electorate, may be sportingly or with heavy heart. Out of these five states where the elections were held, UP and Uttrakhand electorate gave clear majority to Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) with Prime Minister Narendra Modi as the charismatic leader. In Goa and Manipur, the BJP openly making a swift and clever move stole the power in the absence of majority to Congress. However, in Punjab, the results were akin to UP and UK but in favour of Congress, paving way for the pre-declared Chief Minister Amarinder Singh.
Nationwide, these elections will ultimately have a long-lasting impact in favour of BJP which will gain ground in Rajya Sabha gradually, if the winning spree of BJP in state elections continues. For the states, the BJP’s
policies regarding devolution of political and economic powers will tell the fate of various developments there.
Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat are the two states which will go for assembly polls by the end of this year, followed by Tripura and Nagaland in the beginning of next year. Congress in Himachal Pradesh is looking very encouraged to see the results of one adjoining state of Punjab. However, the ruling party Congress leadership has closed its eye on the results of another adjoining state of UK, where BJP has been elected to power with absolute majority. If Punjab has any bearing on Himachal Pradesh, Uttrakhand too has an impact, may be of lesser magnitude.
What and how much impact will the recent elections held in five states have on Himachal Pradesh? Critics give different reasonings of impact of Punjab and UK results on Himachal Pradesh. Virbhadra Singh and Amarinder Singh are related to each other, the Punjab Chief Minister will try to woo Himachali voters in the adjoining areas. More so, the smaller state will get support from Amarinder Singh for electoral resources as was given by him when he was Chief Minister during 2002-2007.
He also addressed many rallies in the adjoining areas of Punjab and made impact. However, Uttrakhand leaders never had direct political impact on this state, but for good number families settled in Himachal Pradesh have their origin in Uttrakhand.
They do influence the political scenario in the state being voters, and the impact from which will be more than the
outside influence, the critics say.
If we look at the pan-Indian scenario popularity of BJP, it remains comfortable with the people as the vote catcher because of Narendra Modi’s style and tenor of mass appeal. Voters in Himachal Pradesh are not different. They will certainly be attracted to Modi’s charisma. BJP will also woo the voters in his name as he remained associated with Himachal Pradesh when his influence in the party
and his strategy for elections in the state paved the way for crowning
Prem Kumar Dhumal as the Chief Minister in 1998. Modi remained BJP in-charge for Himachal Pradesh
Claims of both the sides may be on their sides as openly no one wants to lose the
battle in the public before jumping in the battlefield.
However, during the 2014 parliamentary elections, the Congress party leaders had conceded the defeat mentally, despite the other leaders enjoying power were reluctantly attending the rallies.
After the recent assembly elections in five states, Virbhadra Singh very categorically said that the party needed drastic changes. His views are expressive and have echoed in the high command.
When the Congress High Command will take action on his and advices of other senior leaders, it will be too late for Himachal Pradesh. Even if Virbhadra Singh now is given free hand by the party, will he be able to do wonders in a few months left for elections to regain the power, despite the fact that BJP is not projecting any leader as Chief Ministerial candidate?