The two national Parties-Congress and BJP have started wiping off their differences and seemingly have adopted the policy of imitation.
The politics today is showing a new shift in its discourse. The politics that we knew earlier, were all about political parties striving to convey to the people how they are “different” from that of the opposition. The BJP always maintained that they are different from the “minority-appeaser” Congress. Congress always asserted that the party is “secular” as opposed to the BJP. The CPM differentiated itself on the lines of Anti-Capitalism. The differentiating lines were clearly defined.
However, today the line seems to be blurring. The two national parties have started wiping off their limitations and seemingly have adopted the policy of imitation. Now, the race is not to differentiate from each other but to prove who is better using the similar grounds. Take, for example, temple hopping during elections. The temple visits by BJP president Amit Shah and Congress president Rahul Gandhi seem more about proving who is better Hindu than the other.
Similarly, there are several examples where both the parties seem to imitate each other.
- Aggressive one-liners:
Until 2014, Prime Minister Narendra Modi was considered the best among all politicians to come up with witty and edgy one-liners that would incite a favourable response from the audience during rally or speech. But, recent speeches of Rahul Gandhi prove that he is soon catching up with PM Modi. Though a little late, the transformed Rahul Gandhi is receiving a lot of response from the crowd. The clever take on development with “Vikas went Crazy” was an instant hit and Rahul Gandhi did not forget to repeat it at almost all the rallies that followed during the Gujarat Assembly Elections.
The Rahul Gandhi 2.0 not only surprised the people but those within the political circle as well. A number of write-ups were written on how Rahul Gandhi has found the key to take on PM Modi by following the footsteps of Modi himself.
- Temple Run:
It was the constant temple run of Rahul Gandhi that almost made it certain that in a run-up to 2019 Lok Sabha elections, the Congress will toe the line of BJP. The temple run that started since the Gujarat Assembly Elections continues even till Karnataka Assembly Elections. The agenda was to counter the BJP’s “Hindutva” pitch by creating greater acceptance for the Congress with the Soft Hindutva. From Janeu-dhari Hindu to Lingayat-sympathiser- the Congress did it all to try and keep the majority happy.
- SC/ST Act:
It is not a secret that BJP traditionally is a party that has Upper Caste Hindus as its voter base. This voter base is so far the most loyal to the BJP. This voter base has stayed with BJP for so long because it despises the minority appeasement and the BJP has successfully cashed in on the sentiment. However, the picture isn’t the same anymore. The religion-game has taken a backseat and the caste-game is gaining importance once more. Now the Dalit votes are more important for BJP more than ever. Thus, the party has followed the lines of Congress declaring its unanimous support to the SC/ST Act. Not only the party leaders but Prime Minister Modi, BJP National President Amit Shah and several Union Ministers have come out to assert party’s commitment to upholding the SC/ST Act.
- Day-long fast:
Now, after following many policies of each other, the BJP is following Congress and observing a fast to protest the impasse in the parliament during the budget session. Congress on April 9 had observed a day-long hunger strike to protest the Dalit atrocities across the country. Now, the BJP has announced that Prime minister Modi and several other ministers along with the BJP members will be protesting the logjam in parliament by observing a day-long fast. BJP President Amit Shah will conduct a sit-in dharna in Karnataka’s Hubbali where he is on the campaign trail.
Ahead of 2019 Lok Sabha elections, we will definitely get to see more such incidents. Seeing the two parties imitating each other, however, has left us confused. The day may not be far when we might confuse BJP for Congress or confuse Congress for BJP.
As an independent media platform, we do not take advertisements from governments and corporate houses. It is you, our readers, who have supported us on our journey to do honest and unbiased journalism. Please contribute, so that we can continue to do the same in future.