03/14/2017, 12.19
INDIA

Modi triumphs in India's regional elections and pushes the decline of Rahul Gandhi

by C. T. Nilesh

Last week five Indian states elected local assemblies. The Prime Minister’s Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party excelled in two States, where it will rule alone, while in two others it will form a coalition. His victory comes from a political paralysis and the main opposition leadership, the Congress Party, chaired by Sonia Gandhi but driven by his son Rahul.

 


New Delhi (AsiaNews) – The triumph of the prime minister Narendra Modi’s Hindu nationalist party and electoral collapse of the Rahul Gandhi’s Congress. It is the result of the local elections that took place last week in five Indian states. In detail, the most striking victory was registered in Uttar Pradesh, the most populous state of India and has always tip the balance of national politics.

Here the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) won 325 seats out of 403 total, and will rule alone. In Uttarakhand, the BJP is leading with 57 seats out of 70, against the Congress challenger which stopped 11 seats.

In Goa Congress won with 18 seats, but in all likelihood the state will be ruled by a coalition of BJP (14 seats) and allies (8 seats in all). Same dynamics should take place in Manipur, where the BJP got 21 seats (while the Congress 28) and is preparing a coalition that would enable it to have a majority of 31 seats required to govern.

The only certain Congress victory took place in Punjab, where the party headed by Sonia Gandhi excelled with 77 seats and relegated the coalition between Akali Dal and BJP to third place with 18 seats. Below the comment of an expert in Indian culture and politics.

The triumph of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in recent regional elections in five states (Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Goa, Manipur and Punjab) paves the way for a nationwide victory of the BJP in the general elections to the Lok Sabha (national Parliament) in 2019. As usual, the strongest indication comes from victory in Uttar Pradesh, the state with the largest electorate, [where] three quarters voted BJP. Even the Uttarakhand State gave the victory to the BJP. Likewise Goa has a BJP candidate, Manohar Parrikar.

The popularity of Prime Minister Narendra Modi who has personally led the election campaign in Uttar Pradesh and the lack of a strong personality in the Congress Party have favored the victory of the BJP. Rahul Gandhi, son of Rajiv and Sonia Gandhi, has been unable to reverse the situation and local party leaders associated with the Congress Party are already talking about his retirement from politics.

Akhilesh Yadav, the outgoing prime minister of Uttar Pradesh and president of the Samajwadi Party, has explicitly spoken of leaving Rahul Gandhi and ally with Ms. Mayawati, leader of the Bahujan Samajwadi Party, to win the next election in 2019.

The victory of the BJP in Uttar Pradesh has strengthened the position of Prime Minister of Maharashtra, Devendra Fadnavis of the BJP, who is in coalition with the Shiv Sena, the local party. He has always dominated Maharashtra politics.

The fortunes of the Congress Party are in free fall. Sonia Gandhi, who still has the presidency, because of her age, is not very active. Many hope that her daughter Pryanka who seems more popular than Rahul, will enter into the political scene but family commitments still seem to preclude this.

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