Two years since Article 370: A major success for the NDA?

  Two years after Indian parliament revoked the autonomous status of Jammu and Kashmir, Prime Minister Narender Modi’s government seems to have succeeded in bringing the region under its direct control.On 5 August 2019, a proposal to abolish Article 370 and 35A implemented in Kashmir was introduced by Home Minister Amit Shah in the Rajya Sabha. After which President Ram Nath Kovind also approved it after the resolution was passed in the Rajya Sabha. After getting approval from the President, Article 370 and 35A were abolished from Jammu and Kashmir. After this big decision of the central government, Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh were separated and divided into two separate union territories.   After the abrogation of Article 370 and 35A, Union Home Minister Amit Shah had said, 'Now our country can move forward on the path of peace and development.' He said that this step will further strengthen the policy of zero tolerance towards terrorism. Shah exuded confidence th

The Unforeseen Tussle in West Bengal

 A Vigorous political fight has already set the tone for an highly intensive competitive Assembly Election in West Bengal. The fight for power is between the ruling party Trinamool Congress, the challenger BJP, and the Congress, left front, ISF under the new umbrella of Sanjukta Morcha. The BJP's dramatic rise in the 2019,when its vote tally crossed 40%, only 3%less than a TMC vote percentage, winning 18 seats out of 42, made its ambition for power realistic, but also prompted drastic corrective measures by the Trinamool Congress, which has been in power since 2011.

The BJP has been trying to overcome it's leadership shortfall by taking on leaders from other parties, primarily from the TMC. But it still can't match the ground game of Sanjukta Morcha. The crowd in the Morcha rally on February 28 was not surpassed by the BJP's rally on 7 March, which was addressed by PM Modi, who is leading from Front. The absence of recognizable Chief Ministerial face and it's patchy presence in much of the state are challenges for BJP.


Between The Trinamool and BJP, it's a do or die struggle. But the challenge posed by other political forces contributed an additional element of surprises — the left-Congress and the newly formed platform of Muslim parties, including the All- India Majlis-e-ittehadul Muslimeen( AIMIM) and the influential Bengal Cleric Abbas Siddiqui's newly formed party The Indian Secular Front. These forces do not have any real chance of coming to Power. Yet their presence can influence a large number of voters in a number of constituencies. They can be a crucial factor to consider in post-elections tie-ups.

In the last election, the TMC won 211 seats out of 294, in a large bipolar contest against a joint resistance from the CPI(M) led left front and the Congress. Since then West Bengals social political scenario has drastically changed. TMC has developed holes and weaknesses : the BJP, once a nonentity in the State, has replaced CPI(M) and the Congress as a main opposition. And Muslim political front has in recent days  added a fresh twist in already complex situation.


The Man behind BJP's built-up in bengal:

 Former vice president of TMC and number 2 of Mamata Banerjee, 66 year old Mukul Roy is the chief Architect of BJP's slow and steady built up in bengal. This includes chipping away at the Trinamool’s edifice, by helping the BJP wean away leaders from the party.Roy is now part of every frame in the BJP’s Bengal campaign. If there is resentment over not being counted as among the chief ministerial hopefuls, Roy hasn’t shown it, as he asserts the BJP’s target: “Iss bar 200 paar (This time, more than 200 seats).”


 Roy started his political career as a Youth Congress leader, around the same time as Mamata Banerjee was part of the outfit. He was among the founding members of the All India Trinamool Congress when Mamata floated it in January 1998 after splitting from the Congress. Soon Roy emerged as the party’s face in Delhi, and in 2006, was made its general secretary and earned a berth in the Rajya Sabha. In the UPA II government, he served initially as Minister of State, Shipping, before becoming Railways Minister — a portfolio Mamata held till she moved to Bengal as the CM.

 He joined BJP in November 2017, after getting suspended from TMC for 6 years. The Man is  dubbed as  “Chanakya '' of Bengal politics has since been working on the ground helping the BJP build base in the state, and is credited with the party winning 18 seats in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls. Among the leaders believed to have been brought to the BJP by Roy are his son and MLA Subrangsu Roy, apart from Trinamool legislators Sovan Chatterjee and Sabyasachi Dutta, and Sunil Singh, Biswajit Das, Wilson Champamary, and Mihir Goswami. He also played a key role in the BJP’s success in wooing Trinamool stars such as Suvendu Adhikari, Rajib Banerjee and Jitendra Tiwari.


How TMC and Sanjukta Morcha is tackling BJP:

 The battle between Trinamool and BJP is turning out to be brutal, no-holds - barred fights ever witnessed in the State. BJP is still new in bengal politics so TMC and left Front, are therefore targeting the larger issues of the BJP government at the centre and in BJP-ruled states As a result, issues such as the Hathras rape case in Uttar Pradesh, Central laws such as the three farm Acts and the CAA, the NRC, the escalating costs of petrol and diesel, and joblessness are among the various issues that are getting prominence in the Trinamool’s election rallies.

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