Lok Sabha elections this year will be dominated by an anti-Narendra Modi agenda and a “random political grouping” trying to make the best use of the “electoral arithmetic”, Union Minister Arun Jaitley asserted on Monday.
In a Facebook blog titled “Agenda for 2019 – Modi Vs. Chaos”, the Finance Minister claimed that barring Uttar Pradesh and Karnataka, the 2019 polls will appear to be similar to that of 2014 when the BJP had registered a clean sweep to come to power. He, however, admitted that the coming together of the BSP and SP in Uttar Pradesh and JD(S) in Karnataka may change the arithmetic combination.
“Except in Uttar Pradesh and to a lesser extent Karnataka, the arithmetical combination does not appear to be any significantly different from 2014. The whole emphasis in these two States is on caste coalitions. Vote transferability in such caste coalitions is not so simple. Local chemistries react differently. Many of these combinations end up as theoretical propositions,” Jaitley said.
“The BJP and NDA have to be prepared for a battle for a 50% vote in the direct fight contest. Many states will still witness triangular contests,” he said.
The BJP leader also dismissed the efforts of the opposition parties to unite against the Modi government, saying the agenda of the Grand Alliance or Mahagathbandhan was filled with negativity and that “people want a Five Year Government, not a six month one”.
Jaitley also took a dig at the recently-held opposition’s rally organised by West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee in Kolkata. “On the surface, it was an anti-Modi rally. More significantly it was also a non-Rahul Gandhi rally. The opposition politics has thrown up four desirous Prime Ministers wishing to challenge Prime Minister Modi. Besides Mamata Banerjee, the other three – Rahul Gandhi, Mayawati and KCR were significantly absent in Kolkata,” Jaitley said adding that “there was not a single speech reflecting the positive idea which the leaders proposed for the future.”