Assembly elections have been scheduled in five states, including Uttar Pradesh. Defections, accusations, and counter-accusations are on the rise. The Election Commission has put restrictions on big rallies and loudspeakers, but new tools are being unleashed on social media. From Uttar Pradesh to Goa, from the largest to the smallest state, there is a lot of turmoil. This isn’t going to happen in a bubble. Everything is a game of power maneuvering. Polls are held every year, but the elections leading up to the Lok Sabha elections in 2024 are particularly significant. This is the power semifinal. The parties will go to any extent to win.
This is why the defections in this election are occurring uniquely. Well, this is just the start; prepare to see and hear anything and everything in the country in the coming days and months.
Let’s begin with Goa, the smallest state in India. There, Manohar Parrikar, whom the Bharatiya Janata Party has long proclaimed the poster boy for his honesty, the same Parrikar’s son could not get the ticket. Many others were denied tickets, but since in Uttar Pradesh, everyone from the son of former Chief Minister Rajnath Singh to the grandson of former Chief Minister Kalyan Singh got tickets, Parrikar’s son was also seeking one. Now that he did not receive the ticket, Parrikar’s son not only left the party but also promised to run as an independent candidate. The BJP, which grants many tickets to politicians’ sons, has refused to give a ticket to Parrikar’s son in Goa because of the difficulty of winning this election.
The BJP, which is vocally opposed to familism, saw familism in Parrikar’s son. However, the same BJP has issued tickets to two couples in the same state (husband and wife). Only the election results will reveal how much this particular act of ticket distribution favors someone. It is because of these politics that Arvind Kejriwal, who has been constantly criticizing the BJP and its leaders, volunteered to adopt Parrikar’s kid.
Not only Goa! From Uttarakhand to Punjab, the Aam Aadmi Party is welcoming this defection atmosphere with open arms. The Aam Aadmi Party in Punjab has offered more than a dozen tickets to leaders from other parties. Not only that, but the Aam Aadmi Party included Congressman Sidhu’s name in the voting while selecting their party’s chief ministerial candidate. The Aam Aadmi Party is not lagging in Uttarakhand in providing tickets to leaders from other parties as well. People from the BJP and the Congress have already been elected as MLAs to the Aam Aadmi Party in Delhi. This cycle of defection is not obvious to the ideals of this election.
Amarinder Singh, who has been railing against the BJP in Punjab for years, is now running in an alliance with the party. Furthermore, Harak Singh Rawat has become a one-of-a-kind example of defection in Uttarakhand. Harak Singh, who joined the BJP from the Congress Party and helped build the BJP government, was kicked out of the party soon before the elections. Harak returned to Congress.
The Uttar Pradesh election has become a paradigm of shifting loyalties. There is a competition to see who can get the most people from other parties into their own. A dozen leaders, including Swami Prasad Maurya, who defected from the Bahujan Samaj Party and joined the Bharatiya Janata Party in the previous assembly elections, joined the Samajwadi Party immediately before the current election campaign. Whereas, Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav was surprised when the Bharatiya Janata Party ousted Mulayam Singh Yadav’s younger daughter-in-law, the wife of Akhilesh’s step-brother, from the Samajwadi Party.
The arrival of Mulayam’s daughter-in-law to the BJP took place with such pomp as if a leader with a huge mass base had been vandalized. The arrival of leaders from other parties in the Bharatiya Janata Party in Uttar Pradesh is not a big deal.
Ramveer Upadhyay, the leader of the Bahujan Samaj Party and a former minister in the state administration, did not join the BJP with as much fanfare as Mulayam’s daughter-in-law. To attract national media attention, he was made a member of the BJP in the Delhi office. Not only that, but practically the entire Uttar Pradesh Bharatiya Janata Party was present in Delhi that day, including Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya. This game of counter-defection is most noticeable at this time.
The political camel was going to sit in the opposite direction in Biswan. From here, the Samajwadi Party’s most successful and powerful candidate defected to the BJP.
The election ticket fight is also unique. Imran Masood, a prominent Congress leader in western Uttar Pradesh, quit the party in search of a ticket from the Samajwadi Party, but he was denied a ticket by the Samajwadi Party as well. Now that he has been disappointed, he is expressing his satisfaction by gaining some of the support he had in the Samajwadi Party. Supriya Aron was declared the Congress candidate in Bareilly, although she had become socialist even before the nomination. Occasionally, Supriya and her husband quit the Congress and joined the Samajwadi Party. The Congress is having such setbacks a little too much in Uttar Pradesh.
Priyanka Maurya, the poster girl for Priyanka Gandhi’s popular campaign “Ladki Hoon, Lad Sakti Hoon”, got enraged with the party after failing to receive a ticket from the Congress. The BJP also gave her a chance and took her into their party right away. Riya, the daughter of Vinay Shakya (who joined the Samajwadi Party with Swami Prasad Maurya), has remained in the Bharatiya Janata Party. By handing her a ticket, the Bharatiya Janata Party also brought the father and daughter face to face.
Swati Singh, the wife of BJP leader Dayashankar Singh, who came to the limelight by using derogatory language toward Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati, was a BJP candidate in the 2014 election. Swati was also appointed as a minister. There is currently a fight between Dayashankar Singh and Swati Singh over the BJP ticket. The husband and wife are at odds, and the fight isn’t going away. Overall, this election campaign has seen endless unique defections. This is only the beginning; the bigger picture is yet to be seen.
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