On the lines of Bharat Jodo Yatra, BJP will launch a Quit Congress campaign on a large scale
In Kerala, so far out of reach of the BJP, the party is tying the hope of success. In the politics of the state divided into the Congress-CPI(M)-led alliances UDF and LDF, the BJP is trying to explore possibilities in a clash between these two alliances. BJP internally believes that it can indirectly get the benefit of polarization from the Bharat Jodo Yatra of the Congress. Kerala BJP has not been successful in winning any Lok Sabha seat so far.
However, it had won the lone seat in the assembly only once in 2016. The senior most leader of the party, O. Rajagopalan had won the Nemam seat. BJP’s lack of political success in Kerala is also very much discussed because the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh has a lot of work here. Violent incidents have also taken place between him and the CPI(M) across the state.
Even the reach of the Sangh has not brought political gains to the BJP. One reason for this has been the inclination of most of the Hindu votes in the state towards the CPI(M). In fact, due to the Congress and Muslim League alliance, the Muslim voters have mostly been inclined towards the Congress alliance. In this region dominated by church and Muslim politics, it has been difficult for the BJP so far to woo the Hindu community from the CPI(M).
The situation has changed after the formation of Narendra Modi’s government at the Centre. This is the biggest reason for BJP’s hope. The BJP got only 6.03 per cent votes in the 2011 assembly elections. In the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, it had increased to 10.85%.
In the 2016 assembly elections also, it got 10.6 votes and got one seat for the first time. After this, in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, when the BJP had an alliance with local parties, the NDA got 15.64 percent of the votes. The biggest increase in the party’s votes came in the 2020 Panchayat elections, where it got 17 per cent votes. In the last assembly elections also, BJP got 11.30 percent votes.
In the last Lok Sabha elections, when Congress leader Rahul Gandhi went to contest from Wayanad, there was an atmosphere in Kerala that the country could get the first prime minister from Kerala. This is the reason that the ruling LDF had won only one seat in the state, while the Congress won 19 out of 20 Lok Sabha seats.
Now the atmosphere has changed. The BJP is also in touch with some of the state Congress leaders through Tom Vadakkan, who switched from Congress to BJP. Recently, the BJP has appointed its senior leader and former Union Minister Prakash Javadekar as the in-charge of Kerala, to speed up the activities of the party. PLC/GT