Assembly elections verdict - Why BJP was preferred over regional parties

The results of Maharashtra and Haryana Assembly elections have thrown up a very interesting development in the political roadmap of the country. Regional parties, who used to once top the chart in State’s political lexicon, are slowly becoming less relevant in State's politics.

The figures tell the story. In Maharashtra, the BJP won 122 of the 288 seats. This is almost the same amount of seats the party was being offered by the Uddhav Thackeray's Shiv Sena in the run up to the Assembly election. But the result has shown that how BJP has called Sena's bluff. Shiv Sena, however, while contesting the election on its own after parting ways with BJP, managed to secure only 63 seats. Sharad Pawar's NCP won 41 seats and the Raj Thackeray's MNS won just 1 seat.

Similarly in Haryna, while the BJP won 47 seats, Om Prakash Chautala's INLD won 19 seats and Kuldeep Bishnoi-led HJC won 2 seats.

In both the States, Congress has performed abysmally poorly and placed even behind many regional players. In Maharashtra, while the Congress won 42 of the 288 Assembly seats, in Haryana the grand old party's tally reduced to a measly 15. Congress's poor performance in both the States has also sent a very strong signal: The party may soon be left as a mere marginal regional outfit in the days to come.

The BJP has successfully cut into the political space of the regional players. Today, the party which once used to be a second fiddle in Mahasrashtra and Haryana stands tall as the number-1 party in both the States.

There are five reasons why people have preferred the BJP over the regional outfits.

First, the regional players talk about the regional aspirations. But, in the disguise of promoting the regional interests, many a regional parties choose to promote parochial politics.

But the fact of the matter is that regional aspirations can’t be segregated from the national agenda. Narendra Modi-led BJP's agenda is simple and clear: When the States develop, the nation will develop. The clear preference for the BJP over the regional players in this Assembly elections show how people have been moved by that agenda.

Second, people want a swift development in the State. They want a Government which has a clear vision for the State. They want a strong and stable Government. In this context, BJP – whose agenda is always ‘national’ - is definitely better placed in comparison to the regional parties. People have put a stamp of approval on this very fact.

Third, clearly people want a good Centre-State relationship. They don't want a Government which chose to hide behind the babble of either ‘coalition compulsion’ or ‘Central apathy’.

People need a Government at the State which can work in tandem with the Centre for the State's development. They want a Government which can rightly implement Central Government's plans for the State. They need a Government which can fulfil the financial needs of the State. They want a Government which can properly utilise the Central funds meant for the State.

Fourth, in an era where politics means delivery, people want a party in power which can quickly address the gaps between State's performance and potential.

All these could be possible only if there is a BJP Government at the State. This is the underlying message of Verdict Maharashtra and Verdict Haryana. And that is precisely the reason people have preferred BJP in States over the regional players.

Courtesy Niti Central

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