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Viewpoint: How will a failed experiment counter Modi wave?

Efforts to form the INDI Alliance face hurdles due to internal dynamics and reluctance among potential allies to join hands with the Congress, says Prem Shukla

Lok Sabha Election 2024 Opinion How will a failed experiment counter Modi wave?
First Published Feb 21, 2024, 11:02 PM IST

The alliance of the Congress party and the Samajwadi Party (SP) was announced in Uttar Pradesh on February 21. According to this announcement, SP has decided to give 17 Lok Sabha seats to Congress. Efforts to form the INDI Alliance have been ongoing for several months. Conceptualized by Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, the first meeting of the alliance was held in Patna. Then the move of Rashtriya Janata Dal chief Lalu Prasad Yadav was to push Nitish Kumar into national politics somehow and crown his son Tejashwi Yadav as the Chief Minister.

Lalu Prasad Yadav also tried to push this proposal in every meeting of the INDI Alliance. Once upon a time, Lalu Prasad Yadav had influence over the Congress as well as the third front parties. Now, even in Bihar, the Congress occasionally glances at Lalu Prasad Yadav. There is no such thing as second front and third front left. Among those who have survived, each has his own tune, his own drum. 

Therefore, by the last meeting, Nitish understood that the Lalu family was looting Bihar by showing him a mirage and they had a plan to rob Janata Dal-United also. Just as Arvind Kejriwal and Mamata Banerjee had already played their game by proposing the name of Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge for the post of convenor and president of Indi Alliance. So Nitish Kumar cheated RJD even before he got cheated by the Lalu family.

Mamata Banerjee proposed to make Kharge the president of INDI Alliance but was not ready to leave any seat for Congress and Communists. She even did not allow Rahul Gandhi's Nyay Yatra to enter Bengal. The same is the condition of Arvind Kejriwal as well. In Punjab, he has announced to field Aam Aadmi Party candidates on all 13 seats. In Delhi too, Kejriwal has been notorious for his crooked games in the last elections. 

Samajwadi Party supremo Akhilesh Yadav had also announced seat sharing with Rashtriya Lok Dal, but Jayant Chaudhary decided to leave SP and join the BJP.

Every day in Maharashtra, Uddhav Thackeray's spokesperson Sanjay Raut is demanding more seats than the Congress. The Congress has failed to predict NCP Chief Sharad Pawar's politics for the last five decades. Since the time Rahul Gandhi set out on his 'Yatra' to Maharashtra from Manipur, Congress Working Committee member Ashok Chavan, former minister and Rahul's teammate Milind Deora and Baba Siddiqui, father of former minister and Mumbai Youth Congress president Zeeshan Siddiqui have said goodbye to the Congress.

In 2019, Congress's alliance partner Janata Dal joined the secular National Democratic Alliance. No one is ready to come with the Congress in Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. Congress's ally Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam in Tamil Nadu is a victim of severe anti-incumbency. It is far-fetched to talk about an agreement between Congress and the Left Front in Kerala. 

In the last Lok Sabha elections in Uttar Pradesh, when the alliance of SP-BSP-RLD and the strategic partnership of Congress could not stop the National Democratic Alliance under the leadership of the BJP from winning 51 per cent votes and 64 Lok Sabha seats, now after the separation of Bua-Babua, How will the failed experiment of two boys stand in front of the raging Modi wave?

The author is a National Spokesperson of the Bharatiya Janata Party. Views expressed are personal.

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