With the third consecutive victory of Shri Narendra Modi in Gujarat, intellectuals all across the country and worldwide have written about this impressive win. Here is an overview of the various intellectuals on the remarkable triumph of the BJP and the anchoring role played by Shri Modi in the victory.
Noted intellectual and expert on public policy Mr. Pratap Bhanu Mehta has described Shri Modi’s victory as an emphatic political achievement. Mr. Mehta writes, “He, like a handful of other chief ministers, brilliantly grasped the fact that Indian politics is deeply aspirational. It rewards governance.”
Columnist and avid blogger Mr. Shashi Shekhar cites the above remarks by Mr. Pratap Bhanu Mehta and what he calls a subtle expression of strong endorsement by Professor PV Indiresan (his article dated 14th December 2012 in the Hindu Business Line) to show how the intellectual debate on Shri Narendra Modi has shifted. He calls it a shift that is both real and palpable.
Author and reputed public policy doyen Mr. Bibek Debroy wrote in India Today (issue dated 31st December 2012), “There is no getting away from Narendra Modi’s leadership role in social sector push, empowerment of bureaucracy and insulation from political interference, clamping down on corruption, decentralization, and emphasis on the private sector.” He adds that Gujarat’s growth story was considered as “hype” but since the growth is now reflected in concrete data, it is no longer contested.
Senior fellow at CSDS and founder of Manushi Sangathan. Dr. Madhu Purnima Kishwar is all praise for Shri Modi’s victory in the 2012 Gujarat election and she goes a step further to berate the anti-Gujarat elements who have only indulged in negativity for so many years.
Dr. Kishwar lauds Gujarat’s development in agriculture and attributes it extensive irrigation facilities, building of check dams, Khet Talawadi programme, drip irrigation etc. She also notes the success of Jyotigram Yojana and Gujarat’s wonderful roads network. All these factors played a major role in the wide scale support generated for Shri Modi and the BJP, which made the historic victory in 2012 polls possible.
Noted columnist Mr. Swapan Dasgupta opined that Shri Modi’s popularity among the people gave the BJP a cutting edge in the 2012 Gujarat elections. He also writes about Shri Modi’s ability to draw votes from outside the core ideological fold of his party, thus suggesting that people cutting across all communities voted for Shri Modi and the BJP. Mr. Dasgupta concludes by saying that the BJP not only needs Modi but the Modi model to get votes and rejuvenate the party.
Writing about the BJP victory in the 2012 Gujarat polls in the Hindustan Times, Ketaki Ghoghe takes note of role played by the neo-middle class in this victory, arguing that its role was even greater than aspects such as caste and community. She states that Shri Modi stands for this class, which is focused on better living through jobs and enterprise opportunities not food security or employment guarantee schemes offered by the Congress.
Furthermore, noted political writer, Ms. Tavleen Singh has aptly described Shri Modi as the only Indian political leader today with a clear economic vision. It is a vision that glorifies prosperity and not poverty. Additionally, she asserts that Shri Modi has elevated the aspirations particularly of the youth and middle class of India. Moreover, Ms. Singh has said that he is nurturing a new dream of India thereby overcoming the previously triggered American dreams among the youth.
Reports in The Organiser too have re-emphasized the uniqueness of Gujarat’s Election Campaign in these words, “Modi’s success lies in the fact that he has reinvented, reinforced and rejuvenated the core ideological moorings and converted it into vibrant election machinery, attracting fresh blood and dynamism.” The report has also asserted that no other Chief Minster within India has grabbed so much international and national attention.
Some interesting facets of the Shri Modi’s Election campaign have been affirmed in the report. Firstly, Shri Modi is one of the few politicians who has not given a single interview while campaigning and yet effectively outreached his audience with his positive image. Secondly, he won the hearts of his voters without assuring any freebies like his opponents. Thirdly, while the assets of other politicians keep multiplying, Shri Modi’s have remained constant until now clearly depicting his high standards in politics. And last but not the least, without any personal attacks on his detractors, he charmed his audience not only with his growth spirit but also by walking the talk i.e bringing his words into action.
Finally, the crux of Shri Modi’s success has been well examined by famous journalist Mr. Sandeep Bamzai of Mail Today. With the gloomy national atmosphere of price hikes and corruption scandals, the writer said that India awaits a hero like Shri Modi who is the silver lining of optimism.
To summarize, Shri Modi is the first Indian politician to talk about “the neo-middle class” and is probably the only leader who has positively assured to safeguard the interests and needs of this emerging section of Indian society. As realized by many intellectuals across political forums, political discourse has undoubtedly undergone a paradigm shift with the Gujarat Elections by replacing vote-bank politics based on caste and religion with ambitious and development- oriented principles.
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