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BJP looks at seventh straight win, and with a better tally | Gujarat Election News


NEW DELHI: With the Election Commission announcing the dates for Gujarat assembly polls, BJP is gearing up to not only register a record seventh straight victory but also improve its tally as the issues it faced in the 2017 state polls seem to have faded and also its traditional challenger, Congress, looks subdued and adrift compared to the momentum it had generated last time.
The saffron party has been undefeated for the past 27 years, having won all state polls since 1995. The party faced a tough challenge in 2017 but it pulled off a surprise win with nearly 50% of the votes although with a reduced margin.
However, issues it faced in 2017 including the state-wide outburst of anger among the Patidar community, restlessness among the traders over the GST regime as well as local irritants like protests by fishermen in coastal areas which cost it heavily in pockets have since been sorted out.
The party feels that it faces no real risk, and is banking on the performance of its governments at the Centre and in state, the charisma of Narendra Modi and the welfare initiatives of the Centre, to continue its uninterrupted run in the PM’s home state.
The fishermen who had upped the ante against the Bhadbhut dam over Narmada have also agreed to the project and it has not caused any damage to their earnings.
Although there has been a buzz about the emergence of AAP as a factor in the state mainly in the Saurashtra region, party sources say that the Arvind Kejriwal-led party would struggle to translate into votes the perception of upset it has ginned up. It also reckons that possibility of AAP eating into Congress votes, which could be additionally beneficial for the saffron party.
The confidence in improving the party’s tally is reflected in the optimism expressed by party president J P Nadda, who said that BJP is going to win by a huge margin. .
The factors are seen as favourable for BJP but the top brass of the party has not shown any semblance of complacency with both Prime Minister Modi and home minister Amit Shah leading from the front as both the leaders have frequented the state several times ahead of the assembly poll dates announcement.
Modi has laid the foundation stone of several development projects and unveiled many of them as the leadership has a realistic assessment of the ground level in view of incumbency of over two-and-half decades and also the leadership changes it had to make in the past five years.
The tribal regions in Banaskantha region neighbouring Rajasthan remain a challenge for the party, which performed poorly in the region leading to party’s strength reduced to 99—a slender margin in an assembly of 182 seats.


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