Winners & Losers

Who were the key gainers and losers in the state elections?

With the five state elections completed and the results out, it is time to sit back and look at the winners and the losers. Here are the 4 key winners and losers from the election outcome.

BJP Economics a clear winner…

 That may not be the correct word but that is precisely what this election was all about. These results have been a thumbs-up for an economic philosophy which focuses on rural spending, infrastructure development and an attack on black money. If the Modi government‘s demonetization was a gamble, it surely paid off. But the real winner has been the economic agenda which has become the centerpiece of all these elections. At the end of the day, people want jobs, opportunities, facilities and spending power. That is the new narrative.

Congress; time to rethink…

 Actually the Congress did not fare too badly. It benefited substantially in Punjab and Goa due to the anti-incumbency wave. Even in Manipur the Congress redeemed itself. Of course, they can get away saying that the Congress was the junior partner in UP. But, there is no running away from the real challenges. Congress needs leadership and a complete catharsis. It needs to enthuse its cadres and tell people a credible story. The sooner they do it the better it will be for them!

A wake-up call for AAP…

As Arvind Kejriwal himself admitted, the election outcome was a rude wake-up call for the Aam Aadmi Party. The AAP literally drew a blank in Goa, where it was one of the key contenders to form the government. In Punjab, the AAP was the second largest player but it hardly benefited from the anti-incumbency. That benefit was almost entirely cornered by the Congress. The Malwa region, which was supposed to be the road to AAP forming the government in Punjab, actually let them down badly. The message may be slightly bigger. The people are running out of patience with the AAP’s highly confrontational style of politics. That can be a means; not an end. The sooner the AAP proves its credentials in hands-on management, the better.

Tough times for regional parties…

The key Indian states are increasingly becoming a straight fight. Many of the post-mandal regional parties are facing some tough existential questions. These elections eloquently prove that the public at large is not really interested in politics of parochialism. Over the last 25 years people have clearly observed that this kind of politics has hardly benefited the people or the economies of these states. There seems to be a major shift away from ethnic ideas to a larger economic rationale. For regional parties, it may be a big existential issue! ©

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