As the upcoming Delhi Vidhan Sabha elections are scheduled to take place on February 8, 2020, all the main political parties have started campaigning. The incumbent AAP (Aam Aadmi Party) have started conducting conferences popularly known as Townhall meetings where they talk about the work they have performed since the time they were elected to power.
AAP talks about their success in running government schools, setting up mohalla clinics, bringing down of electricity as well as water tariffs and even setting up door-step delivery system of legal documents but it looks like its rival party, i.e. BJP, has some other plans or strategy of campaigning.
Recently, Union Minister Anurag Thakur as well as BJP MP Parvesh Verma were served notices by the Election Commission and were banned from campaigning for Delhi elections for a period of 72 hours and 92 hours respectively on the charges of making hate speech.
The order came after both individuals made in-appriopriate remarks against Shaheen Bagh protesters. They are not alone, BJP party member Kapil Mishra also had been warned by the poll body for making similar comments.
Now, the question is why are these leaders making such comments or polarising the scenario. Maybe because they are not able to counter AAP’s ground work, hence, they are trying to build a communal scenario where there might be a chance to increase their vote share. Hence, there is also a possibility that they have been trying to make Shaheen Baug protests the main agenda of the elections.
This would not be the first case where the BJP has used polarisation as a tool. A study conducted by Yale University stated that “the BJP gains in polls after every riot.”
Even in TV news debates, where the party spokesperson(s) is called, especially when it comes to the Delhi elections, individuals representing BJP have only been talking about Shaheen Bagh and nothing else.
With such an atmosphere, it will be appropriate to say that this Delhi election is a highly polarised one.
This shows the fact that in the current scenario, people belonging to the BJP Delhi unit are not able to counter the AAP narrative or other factors such as economic problems or unemployment. Hence, they are indulging in the practice of communal politics.
Such polarising practices were observed during their campaigning in Maharashtra, Haryana as well as Jharkhand and now are taking place in Delhi too, where the incumbent party in power is pitching their role in infrastructure, healthcare, education, security, etc.
In my personal opinion, by indulging in communal politics, BJP is doing nothing but actually harming the country because doing this means violating the core ethos of the nation of India. In addition to the ongoing economic problems, the respective BJP members should remember that they have been elected to do their duties and not to give provocative statements.
In conclusion, it can only be said that rather than engaging in politics of religion, the BJP should work on real issues such as development or the economy which concern the people of the country. Or at the least, try to project their vision for the betterment of people.