I had the occasion to attend the Election Express meeting of Rahul Kanwal (Head Lines Today) at Bangalore last week. One of the main discussions during the meeting was “Is there a Modi Wave or Not”?.
I was surprised with the importance given to this question and the vehement denials of Congress supporters. Even the educated Congress supporters like Mr Rajeev Gowda were keen to make a statement that there was “No Modi Wave” as if making such a statement before the public gave them a sense of satisfaction.
In my opinion, this is an irrelevant question. Whether there is a Modi wave or is it a Tsunami etc is immaterial as long as voters seem to keep the Modi focus. Karnataka has been a BJP bastion in the past and hence BJP getting support in Bangalore is not a great event. Even if BJP wins all the three Bangalore seats as it is expected to, is not a great thing. Only if BJP gets 22+ seats in the whole of Karnataka, it confirms a wave in favour of BJP/Modi.
However, I was in for a surprise when I checked for election sentiments in Tamil Nadu with some of my friends. In fact I was pleasantly surprised to see the expectation that NDA may get between 12-18 seats in Tamil Nadu. Whether it becomes true or not the opinions reflect a sense of optimism and that was more indicative of a Modi wave than any thing else. Once there is a wave in favour of BJP it is immaterial if we call it a BJP wave or Modi wave.
It is ironic that the so called Modi wave is actually being created and maintained by Congress than any body else. Every time Congress says there is “No Modi Wave” they remind people about the “Modi Wave”. In marketing this is a great situation where even the competitors help sustain the brand focus. There have been a few “Competitive” campaigns in the marketing of consumer goods but experts have always felt that it is double edged sword. Particularly when the campaign is conducted by a brand which has low credibility on another strong brand, the possibility is that the strong brand becomes stronger. I hope the ad agency working for Congress educates Congress leaders about this.
After the Varanasi rally of Modi, Congress is so rattled that it has upped it’s criticism on Modi. The Vadra issue is also making them extremely uncomfortable since it irritates the top family directly. But each time his reference is taken, Congress ends up revealing its own anxiety and strengthens the sentiment in favour of BJP.
A confirmation of the Modi wave can be also seen from the fact that from the days Congress was talking of its own Government it has come down to the point of saying that it is looking forward to a Government in alliance with the entire “Third Front”. This means that they are now working towards reaching 272+ only as a UPA+Third front combination. This in other words means that on the other side NDA is expected to fight for 272+. Thus Congress has conceded that BJP is good enough for 272+.
The desperation of Congress is on its last legs and hence it it trying to fix top positions in the Army as well as CBI so that its scams can be protected. We need to see what more is in store during the last fortnight of the elections. We can expect some dirty tricks from Congress especially in Varanasi to upset the last leg of UP elections.
Hope everything goes on smoothly as we wait for May 16.
As a Citizen of India