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Why Priyanka’s presence could hurt both BJP, SP-BSP

January 24, 2019 06:33 AM

COURTESY TOI JAN 24

Why Priyanka’s presence could hurt both BJP, SP-BSP
Subhash.Mishra@timesgroup.com

Lucknow

: Congress’ masterstroke of fielding Priyanka Gandhi Vadra as AICC general secretary in charge of eastern hascreated a stir in the rival political camps.


Political observers say Priyanka’s entry has the potential to make or mar fortunes of any political party aiming to capture power at the Centre and would force the BJP and the SPBSP alliance to redraw their strategy. Despite the concerns within the Congress that the Priyanka card could be a bit late in the day, her charisma, personality and articulation apart from the mass appeal she could generate moresofor her resemblance to her grandmother Indira Gandhi, could rejuvenate Congress cadre and upset caste equations of other parties.

Both the regional parties, know well that their rise and growth arelinkedtothedecline of the Congress and Congress’ secondcoming in thestate after having been reducedtojusttwo seatsin the2014Lok Sabha electionswouldbe atthecostof their votebank. For the SP-BSP alliance, the main challenge would be to prevent the exodus of Muslims from its camp to Congress. If the Congress is able to convince Muslims even in one fourth of the 80 Lok Sabha seats in UP, Brahmins and Scheduled Castes would also follow.

BJP faces the challenge of stemming the desertion by Brahmin-led upper caste votes that may gravitate towards the Congress. The BJP has already played up 10% reservation for poor upper castes but this move may offset its dreams to an extent. Holding on to the sulking upper caste in UP is a big challenge that the BJP faces right now

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