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Friday, May 23, 2008

BJP and interpreting Karnataka

This afternoon BJP is in a high and it shows.

That they will win Karnataka was a foregone conclusion for anyone interacting or travelling in that state as I have done in the last year. If they find a strong enough leader, (I am not sure it is Yedayurappa) such as Modi, Karnataka could be for keeps like Gujarat.

But, it is important not to over do this victory. It is not an entry in the southern states for BJP, they do have seizable presence in Kerala already, but, A.P. and T.N. are different ball game. T.N. has after Kamaraj never ever been ruled by a central political party. Congress pretends to have some following, but, has always done piggy back on either DMK or AIADMK. BJP followed suit. Now the plank in which the two parties built their loyal base is eroded, but, it has been fragmented among castes, the vanniyars with Ramdoss and family, the nadars with Sarath Kumar, some of the middle communities with Vijayakanth, the dalit vote being split among 2 or 3 groups each having its own strong base. T.N. with all these splits will see only coalition government in the coming elections and the national parties can only be part of these and stand to gain very little, except that they may benefit in the centre if they have more partners each that much less powerful locally (so that they don't have to put up with the pressure tactics of Karunanidhi as the UPA is doing now). BJP anyway doesn't have any great leaders in TN of the stature or popularity of the glam brigade of cine actors others parade normally.

A.P. I am not sure, but, it is a two way with Naidu and Reddy as established strong leaders, and if anything Congress has always had much deeper roots in A.P.

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