Gujarat's lukewarm welcome to PM Modi on first visit

BJP fails to sweep assembly by-polls, Congress retains two seats

ashishm

Ashish Mehta | September 16, 2014 | New Delhi


Narendra Modi with tennis player Sania Mirza, who called on the prime minister recently.
Narendra Modi with tennis player Sania Mirza, who called on the prime minister recently.

Prime minister Narendra Modi will arrive in Gujarat on Tuesday (September 16) afternoon. This will be his first visit after historic triumph of general elections, and it will also put Ahmedabad on the international map as Chinese president Xi Jinping will begin his all-important India visit from here tomorrow.

On top of that, it is Modi’s birthday on Wednesday (Sept 17). The city is all decked up to greet the homegrown hero. Modi should feel on top of the world but he may not. He would be worried about the by-election results, especially from Gujarat.

Of the nine assembly seats where polling was held, the ruling BJP has won six so far, but the Congress has retained two seats. Of course, the BJP has retained the prestigious Vadodara Lok Sabha seat, vacated by the prime minister – not to mention his assembly seat, Maninagar in Ahmedabad.
The Congress, however, has managed to win in Deesa and Mangrol.

This is surprising since the Modi government at the national level, and to a lesser extent the Anandiben Patel government in Gujarat, has been in the so-called honeymoon stage. If the Congress could not be crushed in Gujarat now, then Modi’s dream of a Congress-free India might remain only a dream.

The results do not bode well for the new chief minister, Anandiben Patel, who had led the campaign in Modi’s absence, and called upon the voters to “gift” all 10 seats to the Gujarati prime minister. She is barely hundred-odd days old at the helm and that is too early to judge her leadership, but Tuesday’s results are the first indicator that minus Modi the Gujarat BJP is a very, very weak organisation.

An overarching theme of Modi’s 12 years in Gandhinagar was that as he went on from strength to strength, the party weakened more and more, depending on an individual’s charisma. It is too early to guess the scene in 2017, when the next assembly elections are due, but the party governments in the state and the centre has its task cut out.

Comments

 

Other News

Mumbai Development Plan annoys activists and experts

Approximately one-eighth of Mumbai’s existing landmass is proposed to be added for development works, especially for housing of low income groups. Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis gave green signal to the 2034 development plan that will make more land available by adding over 3,650 he

My musical journey has been really beautiful: Harshdeep Kaur

Harshdeep Kaur is a playback singer better known for her Sufi renditions. She sings Hindi as well as Punjabi. She sang ‘Ik Onkar’ in Rang De Basanti apart from several other soulful songs. Her track ‘R.I.P.’ composed by AR Rahman was part of Oscar-winner Danny Boyle’s film

BJP lawmakers top the list in hate speech cases

Out of all MPs and MLAs in office, 58 have declared cases related to hate speech. This includes union minister for drinking water and sanitation Uma Bharti along with 14 other Lok Sabha MPs. The list also includes 8 state ministers. A party wise analysis reveals that BJP has the highest numb

After its withdrawal from Meghalaya and Arunachal, is it time to review AFSPA in other areas too?

After its withdrawal from Meghalaya and Arunachal, is it time to review AFSPA in other areas too?

Togadia, Sinha and anti-Modi prejudices masked by empty rhetoric

There is an uncanny similarity in the pathological opposition to prime minister Narendra Modi by two members of the right wing, Pravin Togadia and Yashwant Sinha. They come from a diverse social and political background; yet they share a common strand that shows an unmitigated hatred towards

“We are becoming American digital colonies”

Data is the new oil; and it needs to be protected. In an interaction with Governance Now, Lionel Baraban, CEO of Famoco, talks about how the French tech firm is developing secure business devices to safeguard data against going to other countries. What are the major roles o

Current Issue

Current Issue

Video

CM Nitish’s convoy attacked in Buxar

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter