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( Narendra Modi- Shivraj or Jyotiraditya Scindia-Rahul Gandhi )

Shashidhar .S. Kapur

For various societies different kinds of leaders are needed for different times. For instance while Winston Churchill was a perfect wartime leader he was defeated in the elections once the war got over – he was too obnoxious for peace time.

In Madhya Pradesh perhaps 13 years ago Shivraj was the right choice with the social indicators in bad shape ;besides the only possible Congress counterpart had gone into self –imposed exile. Now that Shivraj has more or less made the social scene respectable and there is a fresh alternative in Jyotiraditya Scindia the scenario become interesting. Shivraj has now become repetitive and his inadequacies to bring in industry or improve education or employment have been exposed . One is reminded of Atal Behari and Madhav Rao Scindia’s epic battle wherein Atal ji had declared “ Ab Dekhe Raja Aur Rank Ki Ladai” Present day battle is a watered down version of that. The only difference is that this time out both are bending backwards to woo the ordinary voter – Jyotiraditya by fake humility & Shivraj by perverse populism.

The point is what kind of Leader does M.P need at this point in time ?My take is that there is a need for a young , dynamic , positive , clean future looking leader –perhaps someone who is modern has a vision and exposure . Both the leaders fit the bill to a great extent but perhaps Jyotiradiya scores more on vision and exposure while Shivraj has the edge in aura. Moreover in this election Jyotiraditya’s party fancies its chances of winning and hence he is likely to be the CM despite not being projected as such . Shivraj on the other hand has created a scenario of TINA – with no second rung leader of stature . If ruling party loses it would be more on account of public mood and less on the basis of a sustained struggle by the Congress over the tenure. Thus whether Namo Shivay or ScinRaga wins the real winner would be Kamal- whether Kamlnath or lotus. That would be a metaphor of merely a change in government without any major change in the system.




* Removed the dark areas of maximum people- thus anti incumbency to the minimum.
*Gave a free hand to RSS – so there is a committed cadre.
* Kept the central leadership in good humour
* Great media management
* Clean image.

*Resentment against Modi
* Poor delivery in relation to promises.
* Inner party sabotage- Kailash , Tai , Prabhat , Nand Kumar lying low – thorns – Babulal Gaur, Sartaj Singh, Lakshmikant Sharma, Raghav Ji.
* Indore lobby unhappy- no representation in cabinet
* Unit y in opposition
* Wrath of Upper castes-core BJP supporters
*Various scams – both central and state
*Resentment against dedicated bureaucrats
* By -election losses
* Industries unhappy
* Rampant corruption at bureaucratic levels
* Younger and fresher faces with the opposition
* Regional dissatisfaction viz. in Nimar due to sacking of Nand Kumar Chouhan


(Every election is different)
* Much more flow of cash
* Greater use of social media
* Enhanced Caste weightage
* Enhanced regional identities.
* Ruthless use of state machinery.
* Much more use of technology- Big data analysis , sentiment analysis.
* Much more personal attacks
* Enhanced role of co alitions wit even minor parties
* Increasingly impersonal – in that the candidates have little contact with the last voter – esp. new candidates.
* Much more involvement of non- state actors esp. wo rkers from o ther states.
* Much bigger role for apolitical people – strategists ; campaign managers et al.
* For the first time there is such a long unbroken reign o f an individual- anti incumbency
* Long reign of a single party- anti party incumbency
* Ground support of newer parties – sign of polity maturing-SAPAKS