A decade ago when I was in the marketing team of an educational institute selling IT courses, the foremost thing we were taught is never de-sell another brand, never show them down but instead talk about what best you can offer and equip them amply with enough information and allowing the customer to completely comprehend and analyse the pros and cons of the different options available in the market, because to convince is marketing and to confuse is sales and there are no shortcuts for marketing, it is an ongoing process.
In the context of BJP’s Bihar debacle whether the voters were well informed or ill informed, irrespective of the education levels and backgrounds and the caste factor it was imperative that the PM was over used, when all that the citizens expected was a local connect with an acute understanding of the ground reality(not that the PM lacks an understanding of the developmental scenario in Bihar) but with a local face missing the BJP certainly missed out on catching up with local mind sets. Modi was a hit in Gujarat because he was a local who knew the inside out there, of course his seamless administrative ability and statesmanship led to his rise in the Loksabha elections but during the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, the people voted decisively because they could connect with the man, they knew for sure was the right prime ministerial candidate, the man who would rule the country and take it forward plus a clear manifesto of development was largely visible in the backdrop of a successful Gujarat milestone against the corrupt stage the Congress left behind.
But in Delhi and now in Bihar, a local face was strongly missing!
It was evident that banking only on the Modi factor and not establishing a strong and charismatic local face to connect with the local people and dismissing some dismayed differences amongst cadres as minor sparks blew the fumes of the big fall setting a posthumous pyre for the BJP. Of course loose canons like Shatrugan Sinha should either have been tightly hugged or shown the door initially itself. The Manji mantra was as bad as the timing of the cow tantra as the people of Bihar seem to have chewed down the fodder(chara) kutantra.
While the over use of Modi in all the campaigns was not only too relegating for his stature but also implicitly elevated the corrupt trio as developmental messiahs amidst the politically illiterate masses of Bihar who chose the lantern in the age of LEDs. Plus the negative election campaigning and the acerbic jibe war was too unsophisticated to be drafted for a person of Modi’s calibre. Maybe it’s time Modi stayed away from election campaigns as he is now the PM of the country and Amit Shah should realise this and delegate work appropriately. The premature stances by Amit Shah and Ravi Shankar Prasad that Nitish Kumar will resign and walk out at 2pm on 8th Nov was the last nail in the chest of arrogance and over confidence. Remember Amit Shah’s invitation to Arvind Kejriwal for the swearing in ceremony during Delhi elections!
Maybe team BJP should introspect and introspect hard as to why they have failed both in Delhi and Bihar. Perhaps it is the ‘Yuddhakaale Shastraabhyas’ anecdote that the BJP needs to shed along with a few kilos of ego and gear up on the ground as the election season will soon blossom yet again on the murky grounds of UP and Karnataka.
Elections are not won with starry auras and magic wands nor is brand loyalty earned by mere superficial logos but by establishing a strong connect which can be done by creating awareness consistently and continuously in consumable doses because people will only believe in what they see and hear every day. Whether the rationalist was eliminated by the seculars or the pseudo seculars nobody knows but the communal monkey is often saddled upon the ideological ogres, made out by a malevolent media blowing the bugle of intolerance day in and day out until the cryptology of political equations are finally settled, now that the Bihar elections are over and a conducive mandate given to the solemnised seculars hopefully there will be more tolerance across media houses on the intolerance debate.
Nevertheless, team BJP must pull its socks and concentrate on some hard core reforms like Swatcha Media and clean up the media houses by acquiring them and relieving it from the banality of their foreign masters thereby reiterating the ‘Make In India’ concept and also investigate the bank accounts and assets of all the journalists and stamp them clean because like the black money there is a black intelligence that is peddled and embedded in young minds today.
But with the meagre political clout in the Rajya Sabha, the least BJP can do is identify the Mir Jafars within and contain its internal and external enemies without fanning fanaticisms of any kind and stay focused on endearing the common man of India with some tough and quick delivery on the promises, the benefit of which should be passed on quickly to be felt and remembered by the common man across India because elections might be over but the electorate is waiting and watching!