Congress leader Rahul Gandhi entered his much awaited campaign in Bengal on Wednesday. He began his election campaign on the last date of the fifth phase of election campaign from the Lodhan School ground in Goalpokhar in Uttar Dinajpur district.
The fifth phase of voting will be held on April 17 and the Congress is contesting 12 of the 45 assembly seats in North and Central Bengal.
In the 2016 assembly elections, Sanyukta Morcha (INC + Left alliance) won 10 seats, Trinamool Congress (TMC) 32 and others won 3 seats.
The Bharatiya Janata Party and Trinamool Congress shared the honor in the 2019 general elections, in which the saffron party was ahead in 22 and the Mamata Party in 23 seats. Sanjukta Morcha had won the Lok Sabha elections.
The former Congress president has started his campaign in Bengal after four phases of voting in the state ended. The party is contesting 92 seats in the alliance with the Left and the Bharatiya Secular Front.
In the 2019 general election, the Congress’s vote percentage fell to 5.7 percent, but it still remains an important factor in Muslim-majority districts such as Purulia, Malda and Murshidabad.
Gandhism has been made clear by him in the Bengal elections so far in his absence. There were strategic and strategic reasons for the same.
The Congress did not want him to stay with them in Bengal while fighting the Left parties in Kerala. Also, the party does not have any major prospects in Bengal, so instead of Gandhi, the focus was on Assam and Kerala.
When Rahul pointed his guns at the BJP. Rahul said, “BJP wants to destroy and divide Bengal, they are doing the same thing in Assam and Tamil Nadu. BJP has talked about making Sonar Bangla, but has devastated the entire country.”
Later, while addressing a rally in Darjeeling, Rahul attacked the central government over the COVID-19 situation in the country. “In February last year, all Congress leaders and I collectively told the PM that India was going to be affected by COVID. You start preparing to save the economy, migrant laborers and small scale industry. The press mocked me Blow and said. Trying to scare people, “he said.
Rahul and the Congress are confused about who is their number one enemy in Bengal. Generally, opposition parties attack dissidents. Here you have an opposition party (INC), which is attacking a contestant (BJP), which has emerged as a major challenger to the chief (TMC).
Both the Congress and the Left parties have lost significant vote share for the BJP in the state over the years and this can be seen as an attempt to reclaim some.
Rahul and Congress have accused the BJP of being soft on TMC and keeping silence with Mamata.
To neutralize this attack, Rahul also targeted TMC. “West Bengal is the only state where you have to pay deduction money to get a job,” he claimed, adding, “We have not aligned with the BJP, but Mamta-ji did it (in the past) is.”
However, here again he showed a lack of knowledge of political history. Congress and TMC won the historic 2011 state elections in alliance. TMC was part of UPA 2.0 and separated only in September 2012.
Social media was linked with memories saying that the ‘real star campaigner of BJP’ has arrived in Bengal – which means Rahul Gandhi. The BJP sympathizers want Rahul to address more rallies so that the BJP benefits.
A last minute rally by Rahul for the fifth phase can really help the BJP. Here are the reasons:
Voters may actually feel that Congress is not expecting so much at this stage and anti-TMC voters may return to BJP.
Rahul’s attack on BJP and TMC’s main contest not both, people don’t want to waste their vote on Congress candidate
Undeclared voters (usually 12% -15%) cannot return to Congress because there is no Eve in favor of the party.
Rahul is expected to hold more rallies in the coming phases of Congress strongholds, mostly Muslim-majority seats. In these constituencies, a good campaign by Rahul can divide the Muslim community’s votes and help the BJP get some seats.
To note, the BJP won several Muslim seats in Uttar Pradesh due to vote sharing. Mamta is familiar with this fact and therefore gave a clear call to the community not to divide their votes.
In short, Rahul’s landing in Bengal may not be bad news for the BJP, it may actually work in its favor.