Saturday, December 22, 2012

Political Marketing: Turning Indian Politics

Gujarat Assembly election was a semifinal for 2014. Modi of BJP defeat Cong for the third time.  Gujarat was not a simple assembly election like Himanchal Pradesh. Recent elections of Bihar, UP and Gujarat are indicator and proof of turning of Indian polity.

Modi is a prospective PM candidate. This simple news made Gujarat assembly election comparable to national election. Modi is adorned by foes and friends with many negatives. The blames are communal, authoritative, personality-politics, non-acceptability, and skewed development in state.
Apparently these negatives look true. But he is a very excellent photographer. He knows how to have a positive (photograph) with a negative. This he has proved in recent past.

He started converting communal negative by Sabhawana sabha. Now result proves his success. BJP won 24 seats which have more than 15% Muslim voters this time. This is six more than 2007. In Muslim dominated areas BJP did well. In Bharuch it won all five. Around Ahmadabad it won 17 out of 21. Likewise, it won 15out of 16 in Surat and 11 out of 13 in Baroda. This is when he didn’t give any ticket to Mulsims.
He convinced them by developments. He developed Muslim areas. Industrialization provided them jobs. Bread and butter are first among all.  He assured them of no communal politics. He created a message of developmental politics keeping all issues aside. Efforts of changing platform brought fruits. Muslims forgetting old owes, moved on a new path of development and voted Modi.

He is called authoritative. Any authority without this quality can’t deliver. He delivered by his authoritative style of functioning. This annoys many and invites criticism. But in our democratic system it is must if used for public welfare. This has more positive than negative if used with a view of delivery. It will prove a fatal if used for self. The sum of this is in his favor which proved him a performer.

Personality politics is the culture of the day. Leaders are trying to be bigger than party. US president do this type politics. His personality is bigger than his Democratic party. This is needed to prove first among equals. In BJP, Atal’s personality was bigger than the party. The only difference is Atal is more moderate than the Modi. This leads to his criticism.

He has poor acceptability at national level. There is truth in it. Time is his side to enhance acceptability among party and allies. If he can Change Muslims by changing himself, he can improve on this issue. No doubt he made a start just after counting was over. He went to meet his old friends turn arch rival Kehhubhai patel. He knows how, when to change. By 2014, he will overcome this problem. Here he needs to make efforts like his communal image shedding endeavor.

Among BJP, he is first among equals for PM candidates. His perception for PM candidate in his party is better than others in public. With winning Modi’s candidature perception and support has increased. The best part is that he is far ahead in this race in the party. Modi has his own image among pubic and better than his party competitors.

In congress, Rahul is in focus for 2014. He has all weakness without any strength in sight. His only strength, he is a Gandhi of Gandhi family. This was a strength is past. But politics have changed the political landscape. This doesn’t mean Rahul can’t do or not having qualities. But so far, it is not proved. And without proof how public would believe.

Rahul is mostly batting from periphery. He never played from center. If played very limited and seasonal, results were adverse. Bihar and UP elections are some example to it. He is sufferer of spill over of current governments negativity for which he is not responsible.

His danger is more from inside. His party has not embraced the change. It is doing politics in old fashion. President Obama came to power by adopting the change. Modi is riding and rising by change. But Cong is not willing to change, hence lagging in the race of 2014.

Congress is trying to get back the traditional vote banks. They are trying to take back SCs vote bank by Reservation Bill and Muslims by showing fear of Hindu face of Modi. This was norm when nations were having boundaries. In the boundary less world and internet age with 3D technology how it will bring result.  Congress is trying to give a ride to a Fresh Rahul in a vintage car.

One more issue needs deep thought. When Cong was single party and player, there was no competition. Monopoly was working. Now when BJP is national party comparable to it and regional parties many in number with better performance than ManMohan, how Cong is dreaming to make Rahul PM in 2014. Why Congress in not taking these hard ground realities into account to embrace change to win the competition.
In 2009, Cong had a trump card- Good work of PM ManMohan acted as this card. But this time all positive is negative. Scams, non performance, sluggishness, inactions are some cards to be in sight.

What cong think positive. Are really they? Withdrawal of subsidy of LPG, FDI, cash transfer of subsidy, giving mobile phone to poor etc are flags to be hosted.  The best among is cash transfer but it will be a seed till 2014. Then one can’t expect the fruits form it. To be tree to bear fruits it will take its own time.

Cong is thinking and bringing reforms in Government. But it is not reforming its party and thinking style to accommodate on going fast changes. How one can win the war with old thinking weapon (traditional politics) and weak house ( prikarima culture). This is the new area where cong needs to work to update and to make itself strong.