Vikas Saraswat
UP Urban Local Body Polls – Do they tell anything
This article originally appeared in centreright.in. CRI content has now been subsumed in swarajyamag.com. The views expressed here are personal and do not necessarily reflect those of the editors of swarajyamag.com

With the announcement of local body election results, the exultation amongst BJP supporters is palpable. BJP has done well in the local bodies where it is set to win 10 out of 12 municipal corporations. It has done well in second grade municipalities also, though not in the manner of its performance in corporations.

The results, however, must be viewed in the context of two three significant points. Firstly that only BJP and Congress have contested the elections on Party symbols. BSP and SP have supported candidates in places but have generally been less than enthusiastic about these elections. The indifference of SP towards these elections can be gauged from the fact that Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav has flown to Melbourne this very morning rather than take stock of results. Keen UP watchers would know that this has been the strategy of these two parties in the last three urban local body elections and that the assembly election results have still favoured them.

Secondly it is well known that urban voters generally favour BJP and that the Party had an almost similar showing in the last urban local body elections also. Thirdly, the 12 municipal corporations roughly constitute just about 90 of the 425 assembly seats. BJP won most of its assembly seats in the recently held assembly elections in urban areas only.  For a decent showing in 2014 Lok Sabha elections or even next assembly elections it would need to work hard in the rural areas.

There is no denying that the results categorically prove urban UP voter’s total disenchantment with Congress and their growing discontent with SP (many of the SP supported candidates have not even been able to come into direct contest) soon after the elections. The marked deterioration in law and order and general misgovernance are all over to see. The results also prove that BJP is still a force to reckon with in UP. All it needs is a galvanised cadre and a credible and inspiring leadership at the helm. But the Pundits will know, it’s a task easier said than done.

(Image Courtesy- The Hindu)