Lok Sabha (Parliamentary) elections 2019 took place in India during the months of April and May and results were finally declared on Thursday 23rd May 2019.
I think it fair to say that people expected the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) led by Shri Narendrabhai Damodar Modi to win, but nobody expected that they would win with such a huge majority.
The NDA alliance got 353 seats in total, out of which BJP got 303 seats on its own. Forget winning, but winning with substantially increased majority against strong odds is probably unheard of.
Consider the backdrop of economic reforms of Demonetisation and introduction of GST. In November 2016, without any warning or hint, he withdrew rupees 1,000 and 500 notes. Undoubtedly, people had a tough time when this was implemented followed by the introduction of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) that brought in many businesses into tax bracket.
On the social and cultural front, the Award Vapasi brigade was very vocal and simultaneously the opposition front led by the Indian National Congress party was getting foreign aid and guidance. Circumstances looked tough for the BJP especially when the BJP lost state assembly election in its three stronghold states of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh.
Many people were threatening that should the BJP win, they would leave India or commit suicide. Opponents did not trust the Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) and accusations of EVMs being rigged were rampant in the Indian media. And there was the additional factor of anti-incumbency.
But what did the BJP, led by Shri Narendrabhai, do to with the 2019 elections?
They started working from the day they took office. The coming and going of civil servants was under constant media scrutiny. Before 2014 elections, foreign policies were non-existent. Robust and pro-India foreign policies were introduced and implemented, leading to improved relations with neighbours, under the Modi leadership.
“Sabka Sath, Sabka Vikas” slogan was applied equally to all Hindus and non-Hindus. Triple “talaq” provided the promise of freedom to Muslim women from all the injustices. Congress did not support the BJP in parliament. But, this must have cost the Congress party a few votes as well as seats.
Opposition parties tried to form the grand coalition (Mahagathbandhan) but it was a non-starter. The Oppositionbarely had any policies on education, finance, defence, foreign or any other subject except defeating the BJP. There was no Priyanka Gandhi effect in or outside Uttar Pradesh.
False “loan waiver” promises given to the farmers in the three states that went to polls before the Lok Sabha elections back fired. Due to false promises to farmers, voters did not buy Rahul Gandhi’s promises of receiving salaries of rupees 6,000 per month or 72,000 yearly. Sign of voters getting alert.
Voters are now aware that besides the Congress there are other parties and they expect their elected representatives to be active in their areas, as we know from the result of Amethi where Smriti Irani defeated Rahul Gandhi, president of the Congress Party, by 55,000 votes.
Up until now Amethi was a strong bastion of the Congress and Rahul Gandhi had won from there in last three Lok Sabha elections.