Gujarat polls, Arvind Kejriwal and his overconfidence

Arvind Kejriwal thinks Gujarat will be AAP domain, post-polls

Arvind Kejriwal needs to be admired for his confidence. After having pocketed Delhi and then Punjab, the Aam Admi Party chief is looking to add Gujarat to his party kitty. Gujarat being the BJP’s own state as of now, Kejriwal does want to prove a point too by emerging winner in the forthcoming Assembly elections. But will his confidence stand by him?

The Election Commission has announced the election schedule for the state of Gujarat, thereby setting in motion some high voltage hopes and aspirations. The voting process in the state will kick-off on December 1 and end with the declaration of results on December 8th.  With the dates now out in the open, the BJP, the Congress and the AAP are set for some majorly active days ahead.

The Bharatiya Janata Party believes Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s own state will stay with it forever. The Congress party has done quite a bit of a revamp by bringing in a non-Gandhi president, Further Rahul Gandhi’s Bharat Jodo Yatra is gaining much support too. It is in these scenario that Kejriwal and his AAP would look at making a mark.

AAP looks to pocket Gujarat

The AAP boss seems overconfident, though. Going by the manner he took to Twitter via a video as soon as the election dates were announced, it looks like he wouldn’t rest unless Gujarat is his. Arvind Kejriwal hopped on to the camera space to proclaim that his party would “definitely win”. He even followed it up with a one-minute “message with love”, in Gujarati. AAP believes that the numbers augur well with itself when it comes to electoral politics in the Western Indian state.

Take a look at what Kejriwal announced. He addressed his Gujarati voters thus: “I am your brother, part of your family. Give me one chance and I’ll give you free electricity; build schools and hospitals… and take you to Ayodhya’s Ram Temple.” The people of Gujarat and the rest if India have started realising that the Ram Temple yatra promise makes him look like one among the saffron sporting politicians they are familiar with. Remember him calling upon the Union government to bring pictures of Lord Ganesha and Goddess Lakshmi on currency notes recently? It looks like Kejriwal wants to have all Hindus vote for his party and thereby shun the BJP, the self-proclaimed apostles of Hindutva!

Will Kejriwal realise Gujarat isn’t Punjab?

But yet he wants to sound different, and for that he has attacked BJP’s alleged corrupt ways. He brought to the fire the Morbi bridge collapse of October 30 that killed more than 130 people to prove that corruption runs in the BJP. The confidence overflowed beyond bounds when he proclaimed that the AAP would win 90-95 seats out of the total 182 in Gujarat. On his wish list is 140 to 150 seats after consolidating its presence in the state post poll win this time around! That means AAP will field candidates for all 182 constituencies this time around, and look for a massive win. Look back and it would reveal itself that in 2017, AAP had contested around 30 seats and won none.

Will Kejriwal’s overconfidence work as he wants it to? The BJP is, for sure, a strong force in Gujarat, and would play a major role in thwarting the AAP hopes. Besides, grand old Congress with a new found vision would also prove a worthy competitor. To win Gujarat, Kejriwal would have to play all his shots to perfection. And he needs to realise that Gujarat is no Punjab by any count.

Sanjeev Ramachandran

A journalist with 23 years of experience, Sanjeev has worked with reputed media houses such as Business Standard, The Ne More »

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