No issues of any kind this election
Firstly, this was an issueless election. Please, nobody won on any issue. You cannot invent issues after the fact.
There is understandable elation at the Congress camp. I respect those who cheer the fact that Advani led BJP lost, at least they are honest about it. Then there are the social justice (the no data version) champions. They too are happy, the same way crooks are happy after a heist. Well, everyone arrives at the party with their own bottle of booze. No hard feelings.
Personally, I am not too disappointed. I think the current winning combination is better than the last. The BJP has not expanded its base, which must worry them. They have nowhere to recoup losses in their base states. The Congress simply swallowed up the Left and Fourth Front. I have said that the left will die out in West Bengal simply because the Muslims will desert it, thanks to the Sachar report. The communists do have a narrow window to attach the poor bengali muslims to quota benefits, but they do not seem to get it. Mulayam simply forgot to take care of the narrow interest in his custody and paid the price.
The Congress is sure to choke the country and further pursue its divisive agenda. Gasp ! If I were on TV now, the anchors would have turned red. Divisive agenda based on caste is apparently not only kosher but necessary.
I am exasperated at the BJP for three reasons,
1. It lets others define it. This is a recipe for political disaster. I remember the political commentator John Carville years ago in the US repeatedly stress this point. In interview after interview, the BJP guests let the words like “communal force” go by unchallenged even while being aware of the connotations.
2. It does not define itself. If the BJP is for Hindu rights, where was it in Malaysia or Sri Lanka ? It did not make a big deal about the Spectrum scam (which I think is a hidden factor in this election). Either it did some adjustments on the scam or was unable to make an issue out of it. Both scenarios are disturbing. Still its work on the Ram Sethu is appreciated.
3. The quota issue completely caught the BJP by surprise. It went along with the Congress. No one can beat the Congress unless it changes the terrain in which social justice wars happen in this country. It was unable to explain the Kandhamal happenings in terms of the quota system, which was its root cause. It did not realize that the middle class is orthogonal to backwardness. The quota system permanently gifted a large chunk of middle class voters to the Congress. Try holding a poll among Delhi University students and families if you want to see the impact of the quota system.
I still support the BJP because it still presents the best challenge to the Congress. I can never reconcile with the Congress party’s policies which are nothing but naked corruption and greed with presentable facades such as social justice and concern for the poor. We have had this for decades now. While the world has marched forward we still live largely in filth and misery. This version of socialism and truth do not go together.