Assembly elections in Maharashtra may take place even before the 2024 Lok Sabha polls and the anxiety and mistrust within the present state government is evident, said Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) MP Supriya Sule. She was speaking at the Townhall organised by The Indian Express.
“State elections can happen even before Lok Sabha. Anything is possible. I don’t see happiness in what’s going on. I see a lot of discontent,” she said, adding that the unhappiness is clearly visible in the administration.
“There is a parallel organisation that does transfers and decision-making, including visibility of some people in Davos. I hear from the press that secretaries are going to people for transfers. Six departments are being run by one person. There is consolidation of power at one end and the anxiety and mistrust among them is evident,” she said.
When asked if the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) will fight as a cohesive unit if elections are held early, Sule replied in the positive, saying the MVA will do exceptionally well.
“The reason is that there is no agenda on the other side. It is a marriage of convenience and hunger for power. Just because photographs are happy, does not mean situation is happy. When people laugh more, I worry more,” she said, rejecting that hardline Hindutva issues such as ‘Love Jihad’ will help the ruling side to trump over the Opposition.
“We need to bring forward people’s issues of job, inflation and economy. Have to counter their propaganda with our agenda,” she said.
Accepting that united Opposition will be a difficult task for the BJP to overcome, Sule said that they (Maharashtra government) could have easily had zilla parishad and corporation elections immediately with the kind of power they have. “And Devendraji’s favourite line — for elections ‘Saam, Daam, Danda, Bhed’, that’s how they fight elections. So in such a situation, I see no reason why they have not taken it for six months. There is no reshuffle — why is there no reshuffle for six months? It is all indicative,” she said.
Sule said that the BJP’s attack on the Opposition has lost its content as it is always about dynasty politics. “He (PM Narendra Modi) talks about dynasty politics very generously. But nowadays most of his pictures are with dynasts. I was surprised when he did not raise this issue (in his recent rally in Mumbai). I thought he would say harsher things, but I was pleasantly surprised,” she said.
“When he came to power in 2014, he said, ‘na khaoonga, na khane doonga’ which was a very good line and India trusted him. Even I thought maybe he will eradicate corruption and for that needed a good chance. But now unfortunately most people who they said were corrupt are today in his team, which is hugely disappointing,” said Sule.