An article by a Bobby Naqvi written for the GulfNews is doing the rounds on Social Media. It claims BJP might have engineered this defeat in Delhi for other benefits. Initially I thought this theory was too idiotic to waste time on, but since many people are actually believing this, I thought of taking a closer look.
One of the arguments placed is that BJP inducted IAC rejected Kiran Bedi only as a scapegoat, to shield Modi. Well has that worked? Even if BJP had put up the strongest face and lost, would Media make it a non Modi election? Why media, even BJP’s own ally Uddhav Thakeray has used this demolition to target Modi. And if indeed they wanted Modi to emerge free of blemish, why did he address all those rallies? Why was Modi’s face plastered on all news papers 1 day before the elections?
Next he says all of BJP’s missteps and bad management were actually stage-managed, deliberate ploys. Really? BJP Delhi Unit is by far the most unorganized state unit. Even in the 2013 Assembly elections, Dr Harshvardhan was a sort of compromise candidate acceptable to all factions. Along with Delhi, elections were held in 3 more states, i.e Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhatisgarh. BJP came to power with over 40% vote share in all states except Delhi where it garnered just 33% votes and fell short of majority. This inherent weakness in Delhi unit was evident even then when other states rode on Modi wave.
The motive given by the author behind this entire scheme of self-defeat is the most hilarious. According to him, once Delhi is won by AAP all media attention will focus on AAP’s Government and its functioning. This will allow Modi Government to pass unpopular reforms in the Budget, away from media spotlight and secondly it will give a free hand to fringe elements to go under the radar and polarise voters on religious lines in UP and Bihar, for their upcoming elections. As far as budget is concerned, let 28th February come and you will see how much airtime Kejriwal will get. Secondly, the largely anti-Modi editors in mainstream media will never let up any chance to skewer Modi, let it be budget or Hindutva loonies, and never because they are too busy scrutinizing their blue-eyed boy Kejriwal.
Say what you may, Delhi is not just another state election. 1 year back Kejriwal showed the guts to go into Modi’s camp in Varanasi and take him head on, making it a battle of prestige. Modi won that round on home turf. Now Modi had to come to Kejriwal’s home ground and take him head on. Would Modi and Amit Shah knowingly let Modi lose this battle of perception? The voters may have voted for who will give them a better state government but the Modi vs Kejriwal, Goliath vs David undercurrent remained, and in fact was hyped up immensely by Mainstream media.
Also, with this loss, BJP has lost the sheen of invincibility. It has shown how it can be defeated, by consolidating the anti-BJP votes with the strongest opponent. It has left Congress completely destroyed. Who would BJP prefer to fight day in and day out? A lame duck Congress or a resilient AAP? Then why would BJP let AAP win, and emerge as a somewhat viable option to BJP, not in the near term but definitely in the future.
On the other hand if BJP had vanquished AAP in Delhi too, the AAP story would have been finished. Humiliated in Lok Sabha and then beaten on their own turf, AAP’s relevance would have disappeared. There would have been internal fights, like we have seen in the past. The entire party could have collapsed. BJP would have defeated its strongest potential opponent, leaving it to battle with Congress and gang for eternity.
As to why are people believing this theory? There are 2 sets of people who support this theory:
1. The disappointed hardcore bhakt: He just cannot come to terms that BJP, Modi and Amit Shah have genuinely lost an election. He is searching for some sort of reason which will put them in good light, make them not losers but winners, make them the proverbial “Baazigar” who has lost something to win something bigger. And for such a distraught bhakt, such a theory is a god-sent panacea
2. The sceptic AAP supporter: While the full AAP”tard” has no doubt that AAP has decimated BJP, the sceptic can’t believe that his party has won in such a resounding manner. He can’t believe the BJP folded on just 3 seats. And he also has deep distrust of the BJP and its machinations. Hence he believes that this is an elaborate ploy by BJP. His justifications may differ from what Mr Naqvi proposes, but he still believes BJP stage-managed this.
In fact, this article proposing this “conspiracy theory” could itself be a conspiracy by detractors of BJP, to give BJP supporters some easy excuses so that they don’t look deeper into their organization to find the real flaws. The best course for a BJP supporter now is to accept defeat, and ask questions of its leadership rather than accepting such lame duck theories.