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Why Rajasthan elections matter before 2019

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Abhishek Jain
Opinionated about every topic under the sun but opinions backed with hard fact. Right leaning writer with interests in Aviation, History and Politics. Tweeting from the handle @iabhishek_j .

As 2019 approaches things will get more and more politicized with lok Sabha elections next year. 2019 Lok Sabha elections are probably one of the most import ones in our democratic history- maybe more than 2014, as it’s going to be a make or break election for India. But before 2019, there will be 4 state elections to be held in the end of 2018. Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Mizoram will go into elections and out of those 4 states first 3 states are governed by BJP and Mizoram has Congress government. It will test all major parties and will also provide insight as to which side voters are leaning towards.

Out of the 4 states going into elections one state in particular will be very crucial for both BJP and congress i.e., Rajasthan. Rajasthan is the largest state of India in terms of land area and has a history of switching parties after every election in the last 2 decades. If congress is able to win Rajasthan in 2018 they will gain the momentum they require for 2019 and BJP will have to give it’s all to ensure they retain this state. But why is Rajasthan so important compared to other 3 states? It is because in both Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh BJP has been in power for over 10 years and both CM’s have huge public support to win it this time as well. As for Mizoram, Congress is looking at defeat with BJP making inroads in all the North East states and gaining public support there.

So why state elections of Rajasthan hold so much importance is that in 2014 BJP won all 25 seats lok Sabha seats from Rajasthan and if Party can do well again in state elections it will have a good chance to win big again 2019 as every seat will count. Congress on the other hand looks like a house divided with 2 power centers emerging already with 2 main leaders Sachin Pilot son for former Central minister Rajesh Pilot and Former CM Ashok Gehlot tussling it out to be named as the main CM candidate from Congress. BJP needs to do well in those states where they have direct fight with congress with little to no local party presence to ensure that 3rd front or Mahagatbandhan doesn’t make a huge dent in its chances for 2019.

Winning here will not be easy for BJP due to the trend of people voting different party in every state election since 1990 and the current BJP government has a negative perception even though they have done good work in rural and as well as Urban areas of Rajasthan. Schemes like Bhamashah Yojana for direct benefit transfer, Mukhya Mantri Jal Swavalamban Abhiyan, Bhamashah health insurance scheme and Mukhya Manatri Rajshri Yojana for the girl child have helped the underprivileged and elevated lot of BPL families in the states but as the recently conducted survey by Dainik Bhaskar suggests that people of Rajasthan don’t want to see Vasundhara Raje as CM again.

It will be important for BJP and especially BJP President Amit Shah to ensure that this perception against CM doesn’t hamper party’s chances in these elections. Recent visit by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Jaipur to inaugurate 13 projects was a huge success and also a poll pitch by the party and with congress still not able to decide their CM candidate and their infighting may prove to be a winning factor for BJP.

If congress loses all the elections in 2018 then it will be very difficult for them to recover from this in 2019 general elections. BJP wants to ensure defeat of congress in all those seats where they have a direct fight. But in election year anything can happen and it’s will be hard to predict which party will come out in front. Prime minister is still the most popular face in politics across India and especially in Rajasthan so BJP will make use of to it’s maximum to gain the support of the people. Apart from development politics another factor which will decide the fate of the parties will be caste arithmetic, in Rajasthan people still vote on caste lines in rural areas and it will be an important factor this time as well. With Kirodi Lal Meena joining BJP this year Meena community votes will likely swing in favor of BJP an important caste in Rajasthan, Kirodi Lal Meena has influence on 60 to 70 MLA seats in Dausa region of the state. Other important castes like Gujjar’s and Rajputs also hold lot of political weightage.

It will be an interesting election this time with a lot on stake and i hope people of Rajasthan decide on important factors like development before voting and not on other issues like caste as we still have a long way to go in terms of development as we have an opportunity to become a growth powerhouse in coming years. As a Rajasthani i want to see my state progress and be counted as on of the most developed ones.

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Abhishek Jain
Opinionated about every topic under the sun but opinions backed with hard fact. Right leaning writer with interests in Aviation, History and Politics. Tweeting from the handle @iabhishek_j .

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