New Delhi:The time now is for the BJP to introspect following the results in Bihar. There are various elections that are coming up, but the BJP is not a key player in the upcoming elections in West Bengal or Assam.
The big test however, for the BJP is the Uttar Pradesh elections and it does have ample time to introspect and fix the damage.Dr Sandeep Shastri, a leading psephologist speaks extensively with OneIndia on what the course correction for the BJP should be. He also discusses what the BJP must do in the next couple of months to be up and back in the reckoning.
Next big test is in Uttar Pradesh:
The elections that are coming up are the ones in West Bengal, Tamil Nadu and Assam. In these states, the BJP is not a major stakes player and I do not think that they are nurturing any major ambitions there either, Dr Shastri points out.
For the BJP the next big test is in Uttar Pradesh and in that sense the party needs to re-think its strategy. The Ache Din slogan needs to reflect on the ground and in this context the next 12 to 16 months will be extremely crucial. At the end of the day, the Bihar verdict proves that development matters.
Looking at the Prime Minister's campaign in Bihar, it appears that his projection of Bihar as a poor state did not make a difference as many people felt that the state was moving forward. A survey that we did suggests that when asked to rate Bihar on a state of 1 to 10 compared to other states, the people have put it in the middle and not way down.
Need to fulfill promises:
Dr Shastri says that the centre should not move quickly and fulfill; the promises it made in 2014. The rhetoric that one cannot expect in 6 months what others could not do in 50 years is really not helping. I do not think that the voter is happy with the blame game and would like to know what exactly is the government's strategy instead.
Bihar has given a clear message that criticism of others should not be personal and one cannot expect sympathy by launching personal attacks. The people have stated that there is support only if there is positive work. If you look at it closely people tend to be sympathetic with governments which have done work and this is the case across all parties.
How does Bihar verdict affect Rajya Sabha proceedings:
Dr Shastri says that I do not think Bihar would have made much of a difference when it comes to numbers for the BJP in the Rajya Sabha. I feel at best it would have made a difference of 2 seats. Hence I feel losing Bihar would not make any dramatic difference to the BJP in terms of numbers in the Rajya Sabha.
BJP needs more people on the ground:
The BJP has to learn from both Delhi and Bihar. The lesson to be learnt is that there are more people on the ground level who are needed who need to create that perception that the government at the centre is performing well. The Prime Minister may have great communication and leadership skills, but the voter tends to look for more on a personal level.
It is very good that the PM wants to micro manage things, but there is also a need to have his trusted lieutenants on the ground. I do not mean just trusted bureaucrats. The pool of people available to the PM needs to be used more astutely on the ground.