India

BJP’s choice of Kovind as India’s presidential candidate a masterstroke

shubham sharma
[ June 20, 2017 ] Bharatiya Janata Party has come up with a surprise candidate for India’s next presidential election, Bihar’s Governor. While many names had been mulled over for the past month or so, Ram Nath Kovind’s name had never arisen. The opposition camp is in a flurry, searching for a Dalit candidate to counter the one selected by BJP. Congress has proposed the names of former Lok Sabha Speaker Mira Kumar or Sushil Mumar Shinde. The left are considering Prakash Ambedkar, the son of Babasaheb Ambedkar. If the opposition does not come up with a Dalit candidate, it will be difficult for Mayawati, Nitish Kumar and many others to oppose the NDA candidate.No political party will oppose a Dalit candidate for fear of being branded as “anti-social justice”. For example, when Kovind, belonging to the caste of shoe makers and dealers in hide, was sent as the governor of Bihar, no party in Bihar could raise objections. Indian political parties are very solicitous towards the Dalits because they are a “vote bank”. They have a distinct identity, of which they are highly conscious. Their distinctiveness is reinforced by the fact that their social and economic condition is undifferentiated, most of them being at the bottom of the social and economic ladder. With the BJP led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) putting up a Dalit, the opposition United Peoples’ Alliance (UPA) led by the Congress party, will be hard put to it to oppose him. There is no doubt that the choice of dalit candidate for the post of President’s election is highly politically motivated. However, successive governments and the other political parties have already played these types of cards. BJP has put forth Ram Nath Kovind"s name merely to capture the community"s votes . BJP which beats the drums of success again proved that vote bank politics in India is everything. The choice of the presidential nominee should be in the larger interest of the entire country. This decision shows that BJP has the only target i.e to grab dalit’s votes in next Lok Sabha election in which UP and Bihar will plays an important role . Uttar Pradesh and Bihar both are the laboratories for all the political parties. The political parties constantly engage themselves in creating vote-banks on the basis of caste and religion. This is reflected in the manner in which candidates are chosen to contest elections from various constituencies.BJP is trying to be the guardian of dalits now a days because of the anti reservation image they have. BJP is very well aware of the fact and they experienced in Bihar assembly election as well where Mohan Baghwat’s only statement of reviewing the reservation policy became the prime cause for their defeat. Reviewing any policy doesn’t means its abrogation , may be it will become more effective by some serious amendments .Narinder Modi and Amit Shah were both set and looking very confident after Amit Shah proposed Kovind’s name because of the majority magic numbers they have . Kovind will need 5,49,442 votes in order to win the elections. As per the Constitution, the winner in Indian Presidential Election is decided by an Electoral College system. The election takes place through the electoral college, and currently the total strength is fixed at 10,98,882 votes. The candidate, who crosses the halfway-mark, is declared as the winner. All the elected lawmakers, i.e Members of Parliament and Members of Legislative Assemblies, vote in the election. Currently, the NDA is in a very strong position for the elections. While the alliance, dominated by BJP, is in power at the Centre, its governments rule in at least 14 states out of a total 29. The saffron party is currently ruling Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Goa, Manipur, Gujarat, Haryana, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh and Assam. Also, it is in power along with allies in Jammu and Kashmir and Andhra Pradesh.