PM Modi, one of the politicians who is currently accepted pan India, by majority of people – but that is today; he was seeded from his homeland – Gujarat. Now, the state is prepping up for another Lok Sabha Elections within a week and BJP is bracing up for the battle, with Modi on support but without Modi in the race.
Since Modi took power as the Prime Minister, he has still kept it consistent in visiting the home state of Gujarat – about once a month. But in last 30 days, he took it up the notch by visiting four times; and he is back again for the fifth time today, to mark the end of the BJP’s Gaurav Yatra. It is the same nomenclature of the campaign that Modi had taken in 2012, only this time, the slogan was – ‘Hun chhu GUJARAT, Hun chhu VIKAS (I am GUJARAT, I am VIKAS)’. Now this might be BJP’s attempt to counterattack Congress’ – ‘Vikas gando thayo chhe’ (Progress has gone mad) campaign, but the counter strike makes it even ludicrous.
This rally was arranged right after Rahul Gandhi’s successful and impressive tour in Gujarat – I said successful and impressive because, for the first time BJP has thought it necessary to take measures to counteract Gandhi’s political campaigns. That itself hints that Congress’ attempts may have caused an unease even in Modi’s Gujarat Fortress, and that Gandhi’s speeches had some facts, if not all. Other facts that the party that prides itself on being ahead in the perception game cannot pooh-pooh are the ‘surprises’ received lately. Like huge rally by textile workers disgruntled over the GST in Surat in July; the nail-biting win for Ahmed Patel in August; protests that have disrupted its Gaurav Yatra; and the crowds for Rahul’s rallies; Patidar protests and not to forget the allegations made on Amit Shah’s son’s business dealings. Every little thing counts here.
That’s not a theory I made up myself – I mean what else explains recent flashy flurries from the state government like just announced projects worth Rs 10,800 crore by Modi? The quickie promised of Japanese bullet train? And BJP leaders like Smriti Irani, Yogi Adityanath, Uma Bharti, Rajnath Singh and Modi himself have been continuously running across the state. Is it genuine vikas, or is it the gando vikas? I will let you to be the judge, but there is certainly something remarkable boiling up in Gujarat; and only time can tell the truth – we are just the assumers.