Lok Sabha elections cruise along Delhi-Meerut Expressway

Opposition leader Sonia Gandhi at Ramlila Ground (image credit X Jairamramesh) & PM Narendra Modi at Meerut rally (image credit X @BJP4India)

Opposition leader Sonia Gandhi at Ramlila Ground (image credit X Jairamramesh) & PM Narendra Modi at Meerut rally (image credit X @BJP4India)

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Opposition rides Arvind Kejriwal while Modi vows slaying corruption

By Manish Anand

New Delhi, April 1: Last year, the Delhi unit of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was almost panting for breath. The Delhi BJP had enormously failed to find people’s support to the party’s agenda against Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.

The party was unable to convince the people that there was a ‘Sharab Ghotala (liquor scam). The Delhi BJP was also unable to impress upon the people on its claim that Kejriwal was living in a “sheeshmahal (mansion of glass)’.

The city unit of the BJP last year held a massive protest right last year in the heart of Old Delhi to corner Arvind Kejriwal on twin agenda. All the seven BJP MPs from Delhi were on the dais. The full strength of the office bearers were also present. But something was missing.

Also Read: Opposition protests arrest of Arvind Kejriwal in joint rally, claims international media

The BJP leaders were speaking to a missing crowd. About a dozen women sat on arranged chairs desolately. “These leaders could not bring even four persons from their respective parliamentary constituency,” lamented a BJP leader who had visited the site to check on the response of the people.

The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) turned the Opposition rally at the Ramlila Ground yesterday into a protest meet against the arrest of the chief minister. This was despite the fact that the full strength of the Delhi unit of the Congress was pressed into action to stop the AAP hijacking the event.

Also Read: Arvind Kejriwal emerges Opposition magnet for Ramlila rally 

The chairperson of the Congress parliamentary party, Sonia Gandhi, sat along with Sunita Kejriwal, wife of Arvind Kejriwal, and Kalpana Soren, spouse of former Jharkhand CM Hemant Soren. The 26-party Opposition clearly sought to piggyback ride Sunita Kejriwal and Kalpana Soren to bring life in their Indian National Developmental and Inclusive Alliance (INDIA).

The Opposition alliance has been wayward until now. It’s without an agenda that can fire the imagination of the people. To an India with a young population, the Opposition promises to incentivize idleness.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi once more demonstrated that he is a master in the art of deflection. He gave an interview to Chennai-based Thanthi TV. He repeated the contents of the interview at the Meerut rally yesterday with all the pomp and show.

Also Read: Lok Sabha elections: BJP battles faction-fighting in state units

Modi stuck to his 2019 electoral shield — all his foes are corrupt; they deserve to be behind bars; none will be spared; the looted money will be returned to the people; they want to stop him because investigative agencies are catching them; bundles of notes are tumbling out from everywhere, including washing machines and pipes, etc.

The popular response to demonetization and arrest of politicians on corruption charges has been positive from the people. Elections since 2017 in states and the 2019 general elections have been benign to Modi despite the visible sufferings due to demonetization.

Modi is once more wearing the shield of the slayer of corruption. The people enjoy vicarious pleasure when they hear that the prime minister is waging a war against corruption. Indeed, Modi effortlessly deflected the scorching yorker of allegations of “quid pro quo” through the electoral bond scheme.

Also Read: NDA pushes Brahmins on margins of Bihar politics 

“Did you even know who gave how much to whom in the past,” Modi thumbed to his interviewers from Tamil channel, who were visibly impressed that they were sitting with the prime minister. If the Opposition grabbed the eyeball during the first half of the day, Modi lorded over the rest of Sunday.

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