Can Issue-Based Coalition by Opposition Parties Stop BJP in 2019?


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In a highly controversial win by the BJP in UP election, Indian politics is going back to 1970’s era. Controversial because there are serious allegations of EVM Scam and even Supreme Court of India is conducting a hearing in this case. After winning the election, BJP declared highly controversial leader as Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, Yogi Adityanath who has a record of spewing venom against minority communities.

To some present situation looks like of the 1970s, when congress vs rest was a general terminology. Several political pundits are estimating the grand alliance could be the best way to stop Modi wave in 2019 while critics to this argument are saying this is the best thing Modi and BJP would need.

Such grand alliance will further personify Modi’s image and will set the stage for Modi vs Rest narrative. Though nobody knows whether this experiment would be successful or not but for Modi it would be in a win-win situation if grand alliance happened, setting the stage for Modi vs Rest narrative and if grand alliance didn’t materialise, the opposition might die alone. Fight together or die alone.

So what could be the solution? Is Modi wave is unstoppable?

I believe nothing is possible or unstoppable. It is just a matter of proper strategies and implementation. “Issue-based coalition” could be the best possible strategy to challenge Modi’s politics of division. This strategy has two immediate benefits.

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Firstly, the narrative of Modi vs Rest would not apply theoretically, opposition parties can still stick to their individual style of politics without compromising with their vote base and ideology.

Secondly, it will strengthen the voice of opposition on the particular issue without a formal coalition and without compromising the ideologies they follow. This coalition would be dynamic and flexible, even the smaller parties without big brothers such as Congress can form such coalition, such coalitions would be difficult for BJP to counter as we saw in the case of ‘EVM Rigging’ issue where different political parties ome together and put BJP on a defensive side.

Issue based coalition on different issues mobilising different temporary alliance of different smaller parties from one policy to the next. Politics in a democratic country is a dynamic feature and should be seen as an opportunity for political, social and ideological experiments. These will ultimately strengthen the democratic system.

Issue based coalition could be such an idea which opposition parties can best utilise to get back control.

Author – Devashish Jarariya [Edited by Velivada Team]

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