This is exactly a month since the results of the assembly elections were declared. Some were expected, some were not… In short there was not much surprise in the result! But the results were enough to supply some food for thought, both politically and in general course.
Let see the political picture first.
One may argue that the change of guard in West Bengal is a complete shocker. No it’s not! In 2009, ‘Change’ was seen in respect of vote share. That has multiplied manifold in another two years. West Bengal was going green was anybody’s guess.
34 years is a long time in democratic politics. Consecutive 7 win for the left in this state had actually made them over confident and more importantly complacent. They started moving away from the grassroot and certain hasty steps in land acquisition etc. made them answerable to the mass. ‘Opposition’ led by now-CM Mamata Banerjee didn’t keep any stone unturned to make the Left sit in the opposition!
But here lies the actual surprise. Though Left was routed in Bengal, still it has 41% vote share! After 34 years, managing 41% vote is a difficult task. As some are assuming, Left cannot come back, that might not be true at all. One week is a long time in politics, so 5 years like a light year. Mamata has already started with a faux pas in bringing the Singur Ordinance… So Left will wait for some opportunities to come and encash on the same.
Left has lost Kerala by a whisker. UDF has managed to get 11 lakhs vote more than the LDF. Only 0.89% swing in favour of UDF brought them to power. Kerala didn’t give any mandate for any particular party. The moral victory is for the Left as CPIM is still the biggest party in the Kerala Assembly.
Kerala & WB has played as eye openers to some of the political thought leaders. Elections can’t be won if the party disassociates itself from the mass. ‘Taken for granted’ is a not acceptable by the electorates. Plan the future based on the reality. These are the lessons for the Left in Bengal, whereas Kerala has proved that able and robust leadership coupled with inclusive growth is key to the success.
In the grassroot level, some unwanted people have registered as ‘primary member’ of CPIM. They are nothing but opportunist, the force which want to earn some benefits by using the party name. They should be thrown out in order to make the party more disciplined.
CPIM General secretary Prakash Karat denied any need for leadership change, But I feel that must be started from the top and filtered down the same thereafter. Theorists like Karat cannot win election on its own!! The left must go back to the basic now and understand the realities beyond ‘Das Capital’ & ‘Communist Manifesto!’
Other Southern state Tamil Nadu has given a strong mandate against corruption. The most dangerous social ailments have been rampant in that state. By throwing away DMK (gripped withy 2G Scams), Tamil Nadu wanted a government free from corruption. But the question is how far AIADMK led by Jayalalitha can deliver the same, only time will say! Kerala too has paraded with VS in corruption issues, which almost made them win the election.
Assam & Pondicherry didn’t make anyone surprised. The Only thing with the Assam win, Gogoi-led Congress managed to be in power consecutive for third term, which might help UPA in centre to resolve complicated north-east trouble.
If we analyse the impact of these election in the national context, it is heartening for the UPA. But winning 2014 won’t be easy as Corruption, Price rise and some other core issues are huge concern for the general public. Inclusive growth with equity is the key for any political party with real developmental agenda.