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3.30 pm Dec 20, 2012

Himachal Pradesh elections: the big picture

Jyoti Kamal sums up the Assembly elections in Himachal Pradesh.
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  • TODAYS TV DISCUSSION WILL BE CONGRESS POINTING FINGER AT BJP IN HIMACHAL AND BJP POINTIG FINGER AT CONGRESS AT GUJURAT..... Asked by: S ESHWAR
  • Jyoti Kamal i wouldn't say that would be the studio discussion, i think today's news has been dominated with the significance of the gujarat win for narendra modi projecting himself as a prime ministerial candidate. so far as pointing fingers is concerned the two parties do it 24 X 7.
  • DONT U THINK FIVE YEARS DOWN THE LINE, WE WILL BE SAYING THE SAME ABOUT CONGRESS.....IF IT DOES NOT IMPROVE GOVERNANCE Asked by: S ESHWAR
  • Jyoti Kamal well governance has been a major issue with most parties in india and that is leading to a confused electorate trying to find the best bet...which so far seems elusive. and riding this confusion are many political parties who know that the options before the electorate are limited. the system has been so structured now, that it is very difficult for new choices to be thrown up. you are right in assuming that at the end of this 5 year term, there would be much for the congress to answer to.
  • Do you think the Himachal victory brings real relief to the Congress before the 2014 LS polls as it did not expect to win Gujarat in the first place? Asked by: Prabhu
  • Jyoti Kamal oh yes...the himachal win has brought a smile to congress leaders all the way to the top. himachal has at least made the game one-all even if the players are not exactly equal. a loss here would have almost written congress off perceptually...because anti incumbency has been a factor in himachal and if congress had not been able to take advantage of that like they messed up in punjab, it would surely have been a major negative sentiment. virbhadra was very emotional today when we met him...he realised perhaps that this has been a tough victory, in a small state, with big implications!
  • WHY ALL THE BJP LEADERS FLOCKED TO GUJURAT WHERE MODI ALONE COULD HAVE MANAGED, WHERE AS IN HIMACHAL WE DID NOT SEE SO MUCH FIREWORKS Asked by: S ESHWAR
  • Jyoti Kamal himachal has traditionally been a low profile election. this time the symbolic value was much different as a loss here would have been a big blow for the congress...however, even as leaders such as narendra modi did campaign in himachal, gadkari got into trouble over certain issues that prevented his appearances here...and bjp was kind of confident in himachal too...this loss has come as a bit unexpected for them. elections are usually muted in himachal.
  • In HP, every sitting government loses as has been the trend in the last couple of decades. Can Congress really credit itself for the victory? Asked by: Gaurav
  • Jyoti Kamal this time yes. there was anti incumbency no doubt, but there were problems with the congress - price rise, lpg hike, virbhadras taint,and so it required some bit of work on the part of the congress to pull it off. it was not an easy election for sure, but unlike punjab where the congress banked too heavily on anti incumbency and capt amarinder singh ended up not putting in ground level efforts, in himachal the congress worked hard and that seems to have paid them off despite the handicaps highlighted above.
  • Sitting in New Delhi, 2 issues seemed important-scrapping of LPG subsidy and corruption allegations against. Do you think that corruption is really an issue in India as in the past not too many governments accused of corruption hsd lost elections? Asked by: Gaurav
  • Jyoti Kamal call it corruption or call it an act that is not fai. bjp has been voted out because there was a perception that it had not been fair to the himachalis as the congress campaign of corruption at the state level and also the issue of joblessness for the youth and the fear amongst many that a government that is repeated tends to be much more open about doing things that are not right worked against the bjp even as virbhadras charismatic image, election management and covering 61 constituencies swung votes the congress way.
  • There were corruption allegations against Virbhadra Singh but the Congress has won convincingly. At the peak of fodder scam in Bihar, Lalu Prasad Yadav still won state elections. Are anti-corruption crusaders fighting an uninteresting war as voters seem to have other issues as more important to them? Asked by: Gaurav
  • Jyoti Kamal it seems to have becoime a case of what is more immediate...in fact the bjp was facing many corruption allegations especially with refrence to the large scale transfer of land to non himachalis under the garb of setting up educational institutes etc. and that local corruption did not go down well with many himachalis who voted against the bjp even as they turned a blind eye to virbhadras tainted image...because that corruption did not happen at the state level but on a national level...so corruption is an issue, but a rlative issue.