Banking on the Modi magic to pull it through, just as it did during the last Assembly elections in the state, the BJP has found itself playing catch up with its rivals when it comes to campaigning. It is no secret that TPCC chief and Chief Minister A. Revanth Reddy’s election campaigning for Lok Sabha polls and the ‘Gadida Guddu’ (donkey’s egg) onslaught on the BJP and Prime Minister Modi has left the saffron party scratching its head on how to respond. After much scratching, the BJP tried a retort of sorts launching a ‘Vankaya (baigan)’ campaign, and in the process losing it entirely on what exactly it was trying to fight the Gadida Guddu campaign with. Any Hyderabadi knows what ‘baigan’ in a conversation means but translating the name of the vegetable into Telugu, pretty much put paid the BJP’s efforts on the back foot.


Reaching out to people during a poll campaign is one thing but expecting them to reach back in return is another thing altogether. This truth arrived home for the BJP after it found that its ‘Sankalp Petis’, drop boxes for ideas for inclusion in its manifesto, remained empty in the city. The BJP chose the Sankalp Peti route and thought it would find a response from the people. If there were any, the saffron party chose to keep those close to its chest. Even worse, a quick check the other day in the party offices of contesting candidates found that many of these Sankalp Petis never made it out into the public. This included the party office of its Hyderabad Lok Sabha candidate K. Madhavi Latha.

Recently, Nara Lokesh addressed a Yuvagalam meeting in Nandyal. However, his absolute silence on their alliance partner BJP, or the NDA grouping raised some eyebrows. Throughout the meeting, which saw participation from various sections of society including students, small businessmen, community members, women, and locals, Lokesh only referred to the Telugu Desam and the Jana Sena. Even during the interactive session, he failed to mention the BJP. At the conclusion of the meeting, he merely thanked the members of the TD and the Jana Sena, completely overlooking the BJP’s presence. Lokesh’s silence on the BJP and the NDA, apparently was all about local politics and votes of minority community in the area which are crucial for the TD candidate N.M.D. Farooq from Nandyal.


Campaigning can be hard on leaders. Meeting after meeting, rally after rally, and speech after speech can leave even seasoned leaders making some inadvertent slips. For the unseasoned ones, then such instances could be more common. The other day Jana Sena leader Pawan Kalyan, talking about the ‘super six’ promises of the TD-JS group, said how women will be able to travel for free in trains once the TD-JS and the BJP alliance comes to power in Andhra Pradesh. The free rail travel promise was immediately noticed by some, and in the end, it was realised that there was no such prospect but what Pawan Kalyan wanted to say was free bus travel.


Jokes about ‘I’ST or the ‘Indian’ standard time may have been around for a long time — how no one ever gets to a promised meeting, or event on time, especially if they are VIPs. And come election season, the ‘I’ST standards pretty much become the norm. It is not easy to be on time, say for instance, to be at an election rally at the promised time. And so has been the case with TD chief N. Chandrababu Naidu. At a recent event in Tirupati, Naidu, who was pretty late, came first, and even later came his alliance partner Pawan Kalyan. The restless crowds in the sweltering heat were unhappy, and the two leaders left very quickly too as they had another event to rush to.


Who doesn’t love ice cream? Especially, if you are on the road all day long and the day has been more than hot. The best way to motivate cadres and help get some smiles going can be an ice cream. If the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi had chai pe charcha, the Congress smartly had its ice cream pe baat cheet, where leaders in different constituencies decided to arrange for a few ice creams. But more than anyone, it was kids and children, none of whom had a vote, yet, had the best time getting an ice cream for just standing around. And the parents had a smile too watching their young ones enjoy choosing from a good range of ice creams on a hot day.


The people of Hyderabad gave a huge boost to the BJP in the last GHMC elections, but the power stayed with the BRS, in alliance with the MIM, who control the House. Their mayor, owing to a policy of reserving the post for a woman candidate, went to Gadwal Vijayalakshmi, the first woman BRS mayor of the city. However, when sudden rains hit the city, none of the corporators of the BRS, MIM or the BJP were around to fend for the people. Including the mayor, who was missing. Sadly, the lady, who changed her party recently, but not her ways of dealing with people around with lots of condescending hubris, was not to be seen when traffic snarls hit the different corridors. However, she was complaining on the political party WhatsApp group about her picture being missing from some campaign material. Sadly, the screenshot went viral. Guess who cares more about missing in posters but is oblivious to missing in action?

( Source : Deccan Chronicle )
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