In Varanasi, in-charge of BJP’s election campaign in Uttar Pradesh Amit Shah declared that “Ab ki bar Modi Sarkar’. It was the apt way to summarize Narendra Modi’s road show that culminated into his filing nomination papers in the collectorate. The crowd was massive. People in Varanasi have never seen such a multitude that came of its own to be part of the mega event that can change the political landscape of eastern Uttar Pradesh. People recount that last time they had seen such a crowd was during Kamlapati Tripathi’s funeral procession in 1990 when whole of Varanasi came out on the streets to mourn the death of their leader.
That time the occasion was solemn, but this time the crowd was in joyous mood which swarmed all the lane, gullies and roads of Varanasi leading towards District Magistrate’s office and chanted Modi, Modi. The response of the people was electric and therefore when Amit Shah said that “Ab ki Bar, Modi Sarkar” he hit the nail on its head.
Some leaders of various political hues might have objection to this slogan because, according to them, this smacks of individualism and is against the collective spirit which BJP espouses. But what’s wrong in saying Modi Sarkar. In fact, till now the BJP’s election campaign is just one man show. It is Modi everywhere. In Uttar Pradesh, three phases of polling is over. Barring Modi and to some extent Rajnath Singh no leader has gone out of his or her constituency asking for votes in favour of BJP.
There are big names in BJP – but where are they. The Hindu mascot like Vinay Katiyar, who rose to political hierarchy because of his association with Ram Janmabhoomi campaign is no where seen in this election. Ditto is the case with former state presidents of state BJP unit like Om Prakash Singh, Surya Pratap Shahi, Keshari Nath Tripathi and Dr Ramapati Ram Tripathi. Murli Manohar Joshi is tied in his own election campaign in Kanpur where he is facing a tough fight from not only Congress leader and Coal Minister Sriprakash Jaiswal but also from BJP leaders within who are questioning his candidature from Kanpur. Kalyan Singh was confined only to Etah, Aligarh and there about while other leaders like Uma Bharati, Arun Jaitley, Lal Krishna Advani and Sushma Swaraj are so much engrossed in their own elections that they are not able to come out of their respective constituencies.
The onus is now on Modi’s shoulder to take BJP to winners’ podium. He is cross-crossing the country addressing rallies one after another. Reports suggest that so far he has addressed over 450 election meetings that does not include small meetings like Chai pe charcha. He is himself contesting from Varanasi and Vadodra and despite that he is using his time seeking votes for the other candidates.
This election is Modi’s election, and the show is undoubtedly Modi’s show. People who are pouring in in polling booths just to vote for Modi because they want to see Modi as next Prime Minister of the country. In this scenario, if Amit Shah says Ab ki Bar Modi Sarkar – what’s wrong in that?