ARVIND KEJRIWAL AND HIS MIND GAMES POLITICS : BJP IS DAMNED TO NOT UNDERSTAND IT
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It is not easy to take the duet of Modi and Amit Shah, especially politically and electorally. With the kind of experience they had in a hostile environment fighting their way from the heat and dust of Gujarat to the highly treacherous power packed corridors of Lutyens Delhi and the Khan market gang makes them quite invincible in this field.
However that did not deterred Arvind Kejriwal from capturing the prized position of Delhi Chief Minister ship. to his credit he outsmarted the Chanakya of Indian politics Amit Shah by playing multiple cards. To beat the shrewd politician of Delhi one has to think the way he thinks and beat him in his game.
In our opinion BJP must always try to capture the four capitals Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Chennai which are all the nerve centers of the country. While except Delhi all other metros come under state governments BJP must be powerful enough to get the corporations of these cities under them so that it has atleast partial power and is in position to keep a tab on these metros and activities. In fact we have in our earlier post suggested that all the metros must be converted as Union territories considering the threat perceptions.
Coming to our theme, while the HM Amit Shah took a bit late to Delhi elections , Arvind Kejriwal has been a politician rather than the CM of Delhi from the beginning. He has been playing a very sophisticated and suave mind games from day one while the BJP was acting as the big brother all those years showing certain arrogance with infighting and other ego issues. The party never considered Kejriwal as a serious threat despite being humbled in the first and then the second election.
If one sees the rise of Kejriwal it is obvious that he has been victorious over all of his opponents. He managed the Anna Hazare show to his benefit knowing fully well that his aim was political and not social. He beat Kiran Bedi who was his colleague when they started the street shows. Then he ousted eagles like Yogendra Yadav and Prashant Bhushan who would have posed a threat to him. He nurtured Manish Sisodiya and Satyendra Jain two leaders without much backing and left the administration work to them while he spent his time playing politics. He developed his own constituencies and voter lobbies in the form of auto/taxi / Bihari / Jhuggi Jhopadi and poor peoples. He criticised Modi on every step and initiated projects in the name of Delhi government.
But more importantly he made sure that his voice reached millions of Delhi voters and citizens. He made radio and TV as his main source of outreach besides road side publicity banners and hoardings. He covered most of the bus stops with his own photo and Delhi government schemes.
In a way the shrewd CM of Delhi Arvind kejriwal was playing mind games not only with the political leaders of Delhi and central leaders but with the citizens of Delhi. He used his mesmerising and convincing voice to the hilt and spoke softly that projected himself as a serious and clean leader who is inclined to work for the people rather than enjoy power and position. This was the USP of Arvind Kejriwal. In other words his public image was just the opposite of his inner objectives and goals which he covered brilliantly. His direct reach to the voters and citizens of Delhi made sure that he was not only heard but was able to convey and pass on all his messages true or fake. The image he formed was unbeatable, that helped him garner votes from the poor , students as well as the educated who all considered him a politician with a difference.
Meanwhile his deputy Manish Sisodia made deep inroads into the education system thus making him and the party a darling of middle class voters who were all exhausted with private schools and their fees and other tantrums. His team came in support of thousands of teachers rather than the schools. They formed whats app groups which were handled and supervised by core party workers.
Last but not least he played the minority card so that the BJP failed to understand the game and fall into the trap laid. While the Hindu votes did not polarise to the extent, the minorities got polarised completely ditching congress and all others for AAP.
Arvind Kejriwal starts work for the next elections right from the day when he wins his elections. This time he has changed his tone against PM Modi and is not seen criticising him directly, fully understanding that this will backfire considering the image and followers of PM Modi. After being caught on the wrong foot and being seen as pro minorities, he started his new gimmick this year by worshipping Akshardham mandir along with his family. He has also started his radio advertisements in a big way with his “mai Arvid Kejriwal bol raha hu” tarde mark. He blames the neighbouring states for the pollution situation and says ” mai kendra sarkar se baat kar raha hu’ thus showing his concern for the people. He requests people to switch off their cars on signals further saying ” mai aapka bhai, beta bol raha ” very carefully selected words to connect to the masses with a sweet and personal voice. He has placed hundreds of volunteers on every signal of Delhiwhih doe snot cost him much but sends message across his powerfully.
However the truth is there is no more careless person rather than an able administrator who keeps playing politics for the masses. He was unable to handle corona on his own and HM Amit Shah had to intervene again this time as the cases are rising. He again played politics here by refusing to take central help for testing centers. He is the biggest political con man of all times; he is able to project all his weaknesses as strengths , his no shows as successes, and his no work as exemplary.
Amit Shah and PM Modi have a much bigger challenge in the form of AK so far as Delhi is related. Considering the choice of leaders that the BJP keeps propping for Delhi it seems that BJP is not keen to win back. The central government comes on the scene only when the elections are there by which time it’s too late and the mind is set of the voters to vote for AK.
The BJP has to wake up from her sleep. It is acting with indifference and foolishly. It must select the right kind of leaders for Delhi which has been changed by the arrival of AK. Delhi BJP needs an equally smart, educated and intelligent leader against AK. The BJP has to work at the Psychological level playing mind games just like the shrewd Arvind Kejriwal in order to beat him in his own game.
Dr Asheesh Shah