Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s recent victories in the state elections of Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, and Chhattisgarh have left millions of his supporters in awe. Many believe that Modi’s success is due to his strong leadership and the blessings of Lord Shiva. However, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) must carefully analyze these results and consider whether they can continue with their current style of governance or if adjustments need to be made before the parliamentary elections in 2024.
It is crucial to differentiate between the Modi factor and overall governance when examining the BJP’s triumph. While Modi’s dominance in the elections cannot be denied, it is important to evaluate whether voters supported the BJP because of their style of governance or simply because they trust Modi as a leader. These are two distinct aspects that need to be considered.
The Congress party’s attempts to undermine Modi’s popularity were unsuccessful, as he overshadowed other election-related issues such as caste influence and satisfaction with local governments. In Rajasthan, the Congress faced the challenge of incumbency, while in Madhya Pradesh, they struggled against anti-incumbency. Despite these hurdles, the BJP prevailed due to the overwhelming support for Modi.
Modi’s influence within the BJP is unparalleled. While leaders like Yogi Adityanath in Uttar Pradesh and Shivraj Singh Chouhan in Madhya Pradesh have their own followings, they are ultimately dependent on Modi’s backing. The BJP no longer needs to rely on issues like the Ram temple or religious debates, as long as Modi can continue his whirlwind campaign tours in 2024. The election results confirm that the Modi factor remains a significant force in Indian politics.
However, it is crucial for the Prime Minister and his government to shift their focus towards governance and improving the implementation of welfare schemes. The lack of sufficient doctors and medical equipment in rural areas and recent incidents like the tunnel crisis highlight the pressing issues that need attention. In order to address these challenges, the bureaucracy and officials responsible for government projects must be held accountable.
While the Modi factor continues to hold sway in the Hindi-speaking belt, the BJP should redirect its efforts towards physically overseeing the delivery of welfare schemes rather than relying solely on issue-based campaigns. Ministers and MPs should monitor and supervise the implementation of projects and government schemes to ensure their success.
The recent election results raise an important question: can freebies alone sway voters against the Modi factor? Despite Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot’s distribution of freebies, the Congress still suffered significant losses. The prevalence of freebies in Indian politics, exemplified by schemes like cheap rice distribution in Tamil Nadu, forces politicians to offer similar incentives to compete with rival parties. However, the BJP must consider the strain that freebies impose on the national exchequer and the potential impact on infrastructure development and other programs.
As a respected leader both domestically and internationally, Prime Minister Modi should prioritize his legacy as an effective administrator and statesman over his image as an election winner. The BJP should utilize the election results and the confirmation of Modi’s power to focus on performance and delivery. By doing so, they can further strengthen their position and continue to serve the people of India effectively.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are solely the author’s personal opinions.