General Elections 2019 – Day 39
Mayawati, Mulayam, and Akhilesh in a show of unity in Mainpuri
Ban over, Mayawati was at her colourful best vocally endorsing her once arch rival Mulayam Singh Yadav (SP) at a joint rally in Mainpuri, U.P. The credit for this rare sight goes entirely to Mulayam’s son and former CM Akhilesh Yadav who worked hard in stitching together the SP-BSP alliance to take on the BJP in U.P.
If there was any doubt on Mulayam Singh’s loyalty to the SP-BSP alliance, after causing a stir within opposition ranks when he endorsed Narendra Modi for PM in 2019, it was settled with Mulayam sharing the stage with Mayawati on his home turf.
U.P is the biggest state in India and holds the maximum seats in Parliament. After a sweeping the U.P assembly elections, BJP had been once again riding a wave of confidence. The subsequent surprise loss in assembly elections in Chhattisgarh, M.P, and Rajasthan has got BJP worried and today’s show of unity will force BJP party cadres in the state to work that much harder to defend their Lok Sabha seats in 2019.
Cong Spokesperson Priyanka Chaturvedi dumps Congress for Shiv Sena
After Congress spokesperson Tom Vadakkan’s surprise move to BJP jolted the Congress, another face of the Congress party Priyanka Chaturvedi caused another stir by resigning from her party to join the Shiv Sena.
For the past ten years, Mumbai-based Priyanka Chaturvedi has been Congress’s very visible face on television channels, vigorously defending her party’s position. Today, in the presence of Shiv Sena leader Uddhav Thackeray and the media, Ms. Chaturvedi was welcomed into the Shiv Sena.
The last two days there had been a lot of speculation over her next move after she tweeted “feeling letdown” after Congress party chose to re-induct lumpen elements in U.P. These elements had been expelled from the party after they attacked Priyanka Chaturvedi publicly during one of her visits to the state. Speaking to the press, Priyanka Chaturvedi felt the party had done injustice to her services, and she was leaving to pursue working for women’s causes in the Shiv Sena.
Will Sadhvi Pragya’s shocking comments on Martyr Hemant Karkare cost BJP votes in M.P and Maharashtra?
Controversy has followed Sadhvi almost her entire public life. Out on bail, Pragya Thakur should consider herself lucky to have won a BJP ticket from the capital of M.P and the opportunity to take on one of the biggest politicians in the state, Digvijay Singh. But not Sadhvi Pragya Thakur.
Today, she shocked the country and Mumbaikars with a nasty comment on the late Mumbai ATS chief, Hemant Karkare, saying she cursed him and he died within a month of that. She called it his “karma.” Hemant Karkare lost his life to bullets fired during the 26/11 Mumbai terrorist attack.
Earlier, Karkare led the 2008 Malegaon blast investigation, and it was under his watch Pragya Thakur was arrested and faced the brunt of police interrogation. Her remarks today has left the BJP embarrassed given its election pitch on security and service personnel. Shiv Sena too will be embarrassed to see one of Mumbai’s heroes insulted by an alliance partner. A police complaint has been filed against Pragya Thakur.
The big question is coming in the middle of elections, will it cost BJP votes in M.P, Maharashtra and other states that view the Mumbai attack as an attack on the country?
NPP giving BJP sleepless nights in North East
Conrad Sangma’s NPP has gone well beyond Meghalaya and is growing in popularity across the northeastern states. NPP has positioned itself as a better alternative to BJP and the BJP-led NEDA alliance of regional parties.
The timing is crucial. BJP has been growing rapidly in the northeast, but its recent move on introducing the unpopular NRC has left voters disillusioned with the national party. State parties have not been able to stand up to BJP, and the Congress is a vastly weakened party across the northeast states. But it’s the dark horse NPP which could well be the party spoiler in 2019.