Thursday, May 25, 2023
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Brand Modi still going strong: That’s the one big takeaway from 2022 assembly election results

Kejriwal’s AAP sweeps Punjab with over 2/3rds majority. BJP looks set to retain power in UP, Uttarakhand, and is heading towards No.1 finish in Manipur and Goa too.

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New Delhi: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) retained power in Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand while the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) cruised to a historic win in Punjab Thursday. In Manipur and Goa, the BJP emerged as the single largest party.

Coming in the backdrop of the pandemic that cost thousands of lives and caused enormous economic hardships, as also the year-long farmers’ agitation, the results come as a revalidation of Brand Modi. Although the BJP had chief ministers in the four states it is leading in, Prime Minister Narendra Modi was the party’s face. It also puts to rest scepticism about his impact on assembly polls.

UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has also made history, becoming the only CM of the state to retain power after serving full five years in office. It’s also the first time since 1985 that a government has been repeated in UP in an election. The results also signal the rise of a new mass leader in the BJP, Yogi Adityanath, which will have significant implications for power hierarchy in the ruling party at the national level. This virtually places Yogi in the No. 3 position in the party after Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah.

The AAP’s victory in Punjab will also have significant implications for national politics. The AAP has become the only regional party in the country which will be leading a government in more than one state, Delhi and Punjab. It is likely to become the launchpad for the AAP to execute its national ambitions. With the Congress on the continuous downslide, Punjab results place the AAP in an envious position to project itself as a veritable alternative to the BJP at the national level. The AAP’s rise from here is likely to be at the cost of the Congress. Kejriwal will now be eyeing Gujarat, where the Congress hasn’t won since 1995. Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh will go to the polls towards the year-end, and the AAP is expected to try to capitalise on its Punjab victory and ride the momentum in these two states, to start with.

According to the trends of election results till 1.30 pm, the BJP won 255 seats in the 403-member assembly in UP, while the Samajwadi Party (SP) got 111 seats. In Punjab, the AAP swept the elections, winning 92 seats in the 117-member assembly. In Uttarakhand, the BJP won 47 seats in the 70-member assembly. In Goa, the BJP won 20 seats in the 40-member assembly. In Manipur, the BJP won 32 seats in the 60-member assembly.

The BJP’s victory in Uttarakhand vindicates the party leadership’s decision to change two CMs in a span of four months last year. Like in 2017 assembly election and 2019 Lok Sabha election, the people seemed to have voted for PM Modi. Anti-incumbency was setting in Uttarakhand after four years of Trivendra Singh Rawat’s tenure, forcing Modi-Shah to go for two quick changes in a span of four months.

Given that except Yogi, none of the other BJP CMs were mass leaders, Thursday’s verdict comes as a resounding endorsement of Brand Modi.

(Edited by Shreyas Sharma)

Also read: Election results Live: BJP is back in Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Manipur; AAP sweeps Punjab

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