Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his party---the BJP---might feel relaxed that an overwhelming majority still support them but they will also be cautious over the fact that the third anniversary of their coming to power in 2017 could be less relaxing if things don't go well in Uttar Pradesh early next year.
Congress's rout in 2012 UP poll flagged off its decline after 2009 LS victory
The Congress-led UPA, which had done well in the 2009 Lok Sabha election but fell flat in the UP election three years after, is an example. If the UP test was an indicator, the 2014 general election turned out to be the worst for the grand-old party and it could win just two seats in the state. [Modi at 2 years]
BJP chose Saharanpur not without a reason
The BJP top brass is also aware of the fact. It was not a coincidence that Saharanpur in western UP was chosen as the venue for an event of PM Modi on May 26, flagging off the BJP's exercise of highlighting the government's achievements in the last two years.
The areas in and around Saharanpur-Muzaffarnagar had seen communal clashes even a few years ago and the BJP leadership has now chosen to speak about its development work there to back its case ahead of the crucial state polls.
BJP's national executive meet is in Allahabad next month
In fact, several of Modi's top ministers, MPs, MLAs and other leaders will campaign across UP for the next 15 days to gear up for the election. The saffron party will also hold its national executive committee meeting in Allahabad next month in a bid to reach out to the electorate. The top leadership, including Modi and party president Amit Shah will also be present on the occasion.
BJP wants to remain ahead of others in the key race for Lucknow throne
The BJP wants to remain ahead of the rest in the build-up to the UP election. It also feels that the battle for the Lucknow throne will be easier as compared to that in Assam, where it came to power this year, since the NDA has 73 Mps in the state who will help the BJP in preparing a strong ground for the 2017 election.
The BJP is confident that the Centre's work for the development of the Dalits and other backward sections will pay off in the UP poll.
BJP's concern will be, however, a CM face
One of the BJP's major concern, however, will remain its face for the election. Although an OBC leader in KP Maurya has been made the party's state chief but the BJP is still not sure whether to go for a CM candidate or not. While, the lack of a strong local face cost the party in elections in Delhi and the neighbouring Bihar lasr year, projecting Sarbananda Sonowal---a local hero-as its CM face in Assam paid off this year.
The party's battle could turn difficult if the Congress goes on to make Rahul or Priyanka Gandhi as its CM candidate for the polls. The two regional parties, on the other hand, have their main faces in Akhilesh Yadav, the current chief minister, and Mayawati, who many is considering to be the favourite in the next year's election.