Just four days to go for the first anniversary of May 16, 2014, when the Narendra Modi-led BJP stormed to power at the Centre with a clear majority. It was after three decades that India saw a single-party rule taking shape (the BJP won 282 seats in the 543-seat Lok Sabha while the NDA's tally was 336).
Modi, who took oath as the country's 15th prime minister on May 26, jokingly said after the triumph that India was seeing a coalition government all these days, now it is time to witness a coalition opposition. The statement had its share of truth for it was the first time since Rajiv Gandhi's overwhelming win in 1984 that the opposition found itself in the ruins.
Good or bad, PM Modi has stolen the limelight in last 1 year
Congress, AIADMK & Trinamool finished as distant second to the BJP
The second largest party was the Congress with just 44 seats. The AIADMK and the Trinamool Congress were the third and fourth in the queue, with 39 and 37 seats, respectively.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi continued to steal the limelight after the victory and his party came to power in a number of states after the Lok Sabha results, namely, Maharashtra, Haryana, Jharkhand and jointly in Jammu and Kashmir.
Modi's government has so far evoked a mixed reaction over its performance in various sectors. But whatever it is, Modi has never missed the chance to make the headlines. The first one year can be described to be satisfactory for the second BJP prime minister of India.
What have the anti-Modi forces done in the last 1 year?
But when we look at the other side of the story, the question that arises: How have the anti-Modi parties done in the last one year?
The same leaders had declared a big war on 'communal' Modi ahead of the Lok Sabha elections and the 2014 Lok Sabha election was virtually Modi versus the rest affair. Even leaders who have traditionally made use of the Congress's decline found a common enemy in Modi and did everything possible to stop him from becoming the PM.Barring Mamata & Jayalalithaa, all other major anti-Modi leaders were annihilated
But it was a universal debacle for all anti-Modi forces. Heavyweight politicians like Sonia Gandhi, Mulayam Singh Yadav, Mayawati, Omar Abdullah, Nitish Kumar, Lalu Prasad, Karunandihi, Ajit Singh and Arvind Kejriwal saw their parties getting annihilated in the own backyards.
The Left was floored, including in West Bengal, which it had ruled for 34 years till 2011. The BJP's vote-share saw a significant growth in that state.
Have things changed for these leaders and their parties after a year? With four years to go for the next general election and a number of state election lined up in between, how much ground have these outfits recovered?
Congress has only gone down and down
The Congress, which is the only all-India competitor to the BJP, has suffered a series of poll debacles after the Lok Sabha election.They have lost power in most of major states in the country and the confusion over the leadership question has added to its plight.
The sudden disappearance of Rahul Gandhi made the party look directionless and although the 44-year-old leader took a more proactive political stand after returning from his mysterious sabbatical, his party has miles to cover to throw a serious challenge to Modi government.
The grand-old party has done nothing noteworthy in the last 12 months to make itself look appealing to the Indian voters.
The Janata Parivar exposes the anti-Modi leaders more
Leaders like Mulayam Singh, Nitish Kumar, Lalu Prasad and others who have capitalised on identity politics throughout their lives and perceived a major threat in Modi for his meteoric rise had put these ageing leaders' political ambitions in peril. All of them were wiped out in the Lok Sabha election. The Samajwadi Party could manage just five seats in Uttar Pradesh while the Janata Dal (United) won just four seats in Bihar.
The Rashtriya Janata Dal could also bad just four seats while Mayawati's Bahujan Samaj Party failed to open account.
The Mulayams, Lalus and Nitish Kumars then decided to merge their parties to form a Janata Parivat to take on Modi. The good show in the Bihar by-polls after the Lok Sabha election in which old rivals Lalu and Nitish Kumars joined hands perhaps encouraged them to form an even bigger alliance to take on the BJP.
But the SP's poor record in governance in UP and the JD(U) continuing internal rift have not helped them in the last one year. Both these parties will face major tests in the assembly polls in Bihar and UP in the near future and only time will tell whether they have it in them to counter the Modi factor.
Arvind Kejriwal made a comeback but not all are yet convinced
Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) chief Arvind Kejriwal tried many adventures after his party did well in the 2013 Delhi assembly election. He quit power after 49 days and then took on Modi from Varanasi in the Lok Sabha where he lost badly. The AAP could manage just four seats in the general election but not a single one of them came from Delhi.
The AAP faced serious internal crisis in the post-poll period with a number of leaders leaving it, citing problems in its leaderships' functioning. It was only in the Delhi assembly election in February this year that the AAP tasted its first major electoral success. Thanks to the BJP's flawed strategy, Kejriwal's AAP swept the polls, winning 67 of the 70 seats.
A number of anti-Modi forces have slowly come to terms with the PM after a year
But soon after the victory, the AAP faced perhaps the worst crisis in its short political stint when two of its top leaders, Yogendra Yadav and Prashant Bhushan were expelled from the party after having serious differences with the top leadership.
The AAP has been there, still making people dream about a better India, but it has a world to conquer before it emerges as a serious challenger to Modi on the national stage.
Only Mamata & Jayalalithaa have maintained their positions
Mamata Banerjee's Trinamool Congress and Jayalalithaa's AIADMK have, however, maintained their positions of strength in the last one year.
While the BJP faced a serious backlash against in the recent civic polls in Bengal after it tried to corner Mamata Banerjee with an aggressive tactic, the AIADMK is certainly hoping for better days after their supremo Jayalalithaa was acquitted in a disproportionate assets case by the Karnataka High Court on May 10. Till then, the AIADMK was certainly looking clueless with its top leader convicted in a corruption case.
But now, with her all set to be back at the helm, the ruling party in Tamil Nadu will be a force to reckon in next year's assembly election. Similarly, Mamata Banerjee too is favourite to return to power in next year's Bengal election.
The BJP's excessive aggression against the TMC chief hasn't helped its prospects in the state and whatever goodwill it had earned in the state in the last Lok Sabha election has reduced alarmingly.
Some leaders have come to terms with Modi while others continue to fight him
On the contrary, leaders like Nitish Kumar and Mamata Banerjee, who put up a combative face vis-a-vis Modi ahead of the Lok Sabha election and also after, have slowly conformed to the idea that Modi is a reality that can not be ignored. Some still continue to fight Modi's image but not with much success.