‘Crowd even comes to see tamasha, no wave in election’
BHOPAL : Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) may be vouching for winning 200 seats in the upcoming assembly polls, but former CM Babulal Gaur maintains that the party will form the government, but the number of seats will decline. Free Press had a conversation with Gaur on assembly polls. Some excerpts:
FP: What do you expect from the upcoming assembly polls?
Gaur: There is no wave in assembly polls this time. In the previous assembly polls, there was Modi wave. Wave factor works only once. The upcoming assembly poll results will depend on candidates. The party with better candidates will benefit.
FP: Will BJP form the government?
Gaur: BJP will form the government, but its number of seats will decline. Congress may get more seats but it is not possible that they will form government. Congress has neither the leadership nor the organisation.
FP: Congress leaders are doing a lot of hard work this time. Will it influence poll results?
Gaur: Congress is in bad shape across the country. The party has to struggle. The party will neither form government at the state nor at the Centre.
FP: What will be the impact of anti-incumbency factor of 15 years?
Gaur: That factor does affect but when Congress can rule for 50 years in the country, there is no reason of any annoyance from the 15 years of rule of the BJP.
FP: What will be the impact of SC/ST Atrocities Act?
Gaur: The upper castes and other backward classes (OBCs) are the voters of the BJP. They form the BJP as a party. There is demand for amendment to the Act. The right to bail should be given. A wife may get angry with her husband but she has to live with her husband only. The votes of general category and OBCs would go for the BJP only.
FP: The functions of the BJP and the Congress are witnessing huge turnout. What does it show?
Gaur: Crowd even comes to see the fair. Crowd has no impact on votes and it merely comes to see the tamasha. In 1990, the biggest crowd was seen in a public meeting at north Bhopal constituency, but Ramesh Sharma lost the elections. Crowd is not a deciding factor.
FP: There have been allegations of corruption on the BJP government with the scams of Vyapam and e-tendering coming to the fore.
Gaur: I agree that there should be no corruption. It does influence poll outcome and inflation too. It is the intellectuals, who do not go to vote, only talk about corruption.
FP: How does image of a leader influence in election?
Gaur: The leader should be active. Goons win elections these days, though. The pleasures and pains of public should be shared, and candidate should be such as could be trusted by the people.
FP: How do you compare Kamal Nath with Shivraj Singh?
Gaur: I never compare anyone with anyone. Nath has developed Chhindwara as I have done in Bhopal. Nath got fund released for the Narmada, the Upper Lake beautification and the BRTS. It is the BJP which has developed the state under the leadership of Shivraj Singh Chouhan. Having personal relations is a separate matter, but it is true that Arjun Singh and Digvijay Singh did nothing for the development of the state.
FP: Parties are resorting to divisive politics. Do you feel it is proper?
Gaur: This pattern has come from politics in South India. Political leaders do such things just to increase their popularity. It is good as people in a way are getting something.
FP: The Congress is talking about making ‘Ramvanpath’. What do you say?
Gaur: Who fulfills announcements in today’s politics? The Congress may be talking about the route followed by Lord Rama during his exile, but it should talk about Ayodhya, which was the birthplace of Lord Rama.
FP: How long do you wish to remain in politics?
Gaur: I will remain in politics as long as there is strength in my hands and legs. I will get ticket this time too and win. I believe in karma and one should work as long as one is alive.