BJP caught unprepared to tackle Kejriwal?
The way the BJP has been attacking Arvind Kejriwal and his party after failing to form a government in Delhi, it is showing its lack of confidence in dealing with the new-found enemy. Rahul Gandhi is an easier target for the man's party has been buried under a strong anti-incumbency wave. But Kejriwal's case is different. He has gained a momentum and ever since the poll results came out on December 8, the AAP is a force steadily rising. What makes it even more significant is that the AAP, like the BJP, is a party which has its main base among the urban voters.
The Kejriwal vs Modi affair speaks about competitive opposition in our politics
Sources said the AAP, bolstered by its recent success in Delhi, is likely to contest in 300 seats in the next Lok Sabha elections and it has already begun its mission in various states. This is a big thing for the same party was thinking of contesting in 100 seats in the Lok Sabha before the Delhi election took place. Modi and his party strategists looking to get a single majority in the big battle won't be very relieved with this news.
Modi was thinking about a long-term plan, AAP speaks about instant success
Modi, so far, has been found laying out his alternative plan in a slow manner. He is speaking about how the country should advance towards its 75th independence day or how its micro-economics should be managed. But now, with the AAP wasting no time to deliver on its pre-poll promises of free water and cheap power in Delhi, the BJP's leadership will be under pressure to lay out a formula of instant success before the people. Even if a Narendra Modi government comes to power at the Centre in another six months time, it will face a stiff competition from the Kejriwal government, also ruling in Delhi. The rising expectation will surely Modi's visions under stress. It is all about a competitive opposition in Indian politics now.
BJP's take on Kejriwal not convincing for Aam
The fast politics of the AAP has already seen the Congress government in Maharashtra to reduce power tariff and the BJP chief minister of Rajasthan putting a curb on her security arrangements. The AAP has imported a positive trend in the national politics, which nowadays survives mainly on negative traits. The BJP, on the other hand, was largely fighting the Congress by cashing in on the anti-incumbency mood.
But can it tackle the AAP like that? Chances are slim. The opposition leader in Delhi Assembly, Harshvardhan, was seen mocking and taunting Kejriwal on various issues on the floor on Thursday. But whatever he said is unlikely to strike a chord with the people for Kejriwal is at his populist best at the moment.
Other BJP leaders like Nitin Gadkari has accused the AAP of making an agreement with the Congress behind the veils while Arun Jaitley has tried to expose the AAP by taking up the practical disadvantage of a subsidy economy. But it is difficult to believe at this moment that reason will help the BJP to overcome the challenge called Kejriwal. He may be a newcomer in party politics, but is no lightweight in the popular space.
In fact, the Congress's backing the AAP in Delhi could also be a worrying trend for the BJP. What if the AAP emerges as a powerful third force and is backed by the Congress and other parties to keep away Modi from power after the next Lok Sabha elections?