From various major political parties losing their stronghold constituencies to several parties breaking new political ground in critical states, the 2019 general elections saw drastically different levels of performances. Out of the lot the BJP has evidently emerged on the positive end of the scale, with the party not only holding on to most of the PC’s from the last LS polls but also managing to make deep political inroads in states like West Bengal, Telangana and others.
In West Bengal, the saffron party posted an impressive performance by winning on 18 Parliamentary Constituencies and managing a massive vote share of little more than 40%. While the BJP’s impressive performance in West Bengal takes the centre stage, party’s performance in Telangana has surely been missing out from most of the prime time discussions and other opinion articles, despite its massive impact. In Telangana, BJP posted unprecedented performance by winning on 4 Parliamentary Constituencies and managing a healthy vote share of little more than 19%. These electoral outcomes in Telangana, place the BJP at a similar position as it found itself in West Bengal post 2014 general elections results.
Following with the trend BJP has already begun working in Telangana for upcoming electoral contests. Similar to West Bengal, BJP’s strategy in Telangana seems to be driving on the two-sided approach which saw its successful realization in West Bengal this general elections. Firstly, strengthening of cadre base in Telangana has surely been one of the main focus areas of the BJP, this coupled with strong local leaders joining the BJP fold is sure to boost party’ electoral plans in the state.
Recently, another senior leader of the Congress Komatireddy Raj Gopal Reddy had also hinted that he may join the BJP in the state. Apart from this, several prominent Telangana leaders from Congress and TRS have defected from their parties and joined the BJP. Among the senior faces, Soyam Bapu Rao, a Congress dissident who had entered the BJP fray ahead of the elections, had won the party the Adilabad seat. Apart from him, Congress leaders including Ananda Bhaskar Rapolu, D K Aruna and Ponguleti Sudhakar Reddy had also joined the saffron party. Apart from Congress, even TRS leaders including A P Jithender Reddy had joined the BJP ahead of the elections. These leaders had increased BJP’s popularity amongst the people and have brought along their support base as well.
By these recent additions to the BJP’s local leadership base, it is evident that the party has been working proactively on the second part of its strategy, namely getting local influential leaders within the party fold. This strategy by the saffron party is sure to benefit the party in the upcoming elections in the state. Induction of G Krishna Reddy from Telangana in PM Modi’s Union Council of Ministers is another indication of BJP’s focus on the new state. Building cadre base and getting local leadership on board has so far fared well for the BJP as it is evident in West Bengal however it remains to be seen if BJP will be successful in materializing ‘Operation Bengal’ in Telangana as well.