Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Friday said that the BJP would get a bigger mandate than in 2014 in the general elections and the “New India” is a positive India which does not accept the “negativism of Rahul, Arvind Kejriwal, Mamata Banerjee and TDP”.
In a blog post, “Has the Congress Thrown its Hands up?”, Jaitley said voting for the first three rounds of the elections covering 303 parliamentary seats is over and electoral battle now enters the Hindi heartland.
He said that in most of the states where elections are to be held in the coming rounds, it is a direct contest between the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the opposition party “is in no position to effectively take on the regional parties or the BJP”.
“Therefore, the only issue in the future rounds is the width of the margin of victory of the BJP. Will it be a repeat of 2014 in terms of votes, or will it be more? A euphoric reaction at the ground suggests a mandate larger than 2014. A 65 per cent to 70 per cent approval rating for an incumbent Prime Minister is unprecedented in India. It is reflecting in the groundswell,” Jaitley said.
He said the Congress has announced 424 seats, though the proposed grand alliance at the national level died before it was born.
Jaitley said that Congress President Rahul Gandhi, in the last one year, built up “a fake narrative” on Rafale and loan waiver to business houses, which was contrary to the truth.
“The fake issues evaporated and now strike no chord with the electorate. Having to apologise to the Supreme Court for false public narrative significantly diminishes the credibility of a political leader. Rahul became a victim of his own falsehood,” Jaitley said.
The BJP leader said that the “desperation reached a peak” when Gandhi, “without realising that Arvind Kejriwal was playing games with him”, offered him four seats contrary to the advice of the party’s state unit and “displayed the desperation of a loser”.
Attacking the Congress leader further, Jaitley said that instead of sharing the nationalist mood in the country post Balakot, Gandhi positioned his party against both the national interest and the national mood.
“He considered Balakot not a blow to Pakistan-sponsored terrorism but to the Congress party. When the Kashmir parties take a position of soft separatism, the Congress has been unable to reveal either its stand for or any opposition to it.”
Jaitley said that the desperation reached climax when the Congress and the NCP had to “outsource” the job of attacking Prime Minister to MNS leader Raj Thackeray without realising the fallout of such a move in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and other north Indian states.
He said the Congress manifesto on national security was completely against the nationalistic mood in the country.
“Rahul had to seek cover at Wayanad and Priyanka had to skip Varanasi and feel satisfied not to contest because there was no Wayanad available to her. The ‘New India’ is a positive India. It does not accept the negativism of Rahul, Arvind Kejriwal, Mamata Banerjee and TDP. The ‘New India’ wants to look up rather than be cynical and critical about their own country,” he said.
Jaitley said that the Congress and Rahul Gandhi are 48 years behind the times.
“2019 and 1971 are 48 years apart. India’s social combination and economic profile has completely changed. The Congress is contesting the 2019 election on the 1971 agenda. It is not in tune with the times. The writing on the wall is loud and clear. Those who lived a life of entitlement all through, give up when office seems to be a distant dream,” the Minister said.
He said that in the North East, Bengal and Odisha, the contest was between the regional parties and the BJP and the party also appears to be making significant gains in the east.
Among the southern states, Karnataka appears to be going the BJP way.
“With the regional parties dominating Andhra and Telangana, the Congress in both states and the TDP are staring at a washout.”