Surveys bring bad news for BJP in MP, UP, Maharastra
The monthly internal surveys of the BJP have become a subject of discussion in the political circles. According to reports, a survey conducted in Madhya Pradesh predicted a comprehensive defeat of the party in the assembly elections to be held in November this year. The party had been counting on incumbent Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan’s popularity and the hugely successful Hindutva plank. It has built a 108 feet Parshuram statue in Katni, which will be inaugurated on June 12.
It is building a Rs 100-crore Sant Ravidas temple at Sagar, for which water and bricks are being gathered from villages across the state in a campaign like the one carried out to build the Ram temple at Ayodhya. But the uprooting of the statues of Saptrishis by strong winds at the Mahakal temple complex in Ujjain has dealt a blow to the BJP’s Hindutva plank.
The opposition Congress charged the BJP with indulging in corruption even at holy sites. The reports from Maharashtra are not too different. The party’s alliance with the Eknath Shinde faction of Shiv Sena does not appear to have gone down well with the people. The alliance faces a rout if elections are held today. In Uttar Pradesh, where the BJP expects to improve its position from the 62 seats won in 2019, reports do not suggest any substantial improvement. The BJP has been conducting monthly surveys to gauge the performance of its governments and the people’s mood.
Mekedatu to test the strength of Congress, DMK ties
All its allies, including the DMK, celebrated the Congress victory in Karnataka. Tamil Nadu chief minister M K Stalin attended the swearing-in of Congress Chief Minister Siddaramaiah. But days after taking office, Deputy Chief Minister D K Shivakumar, who also holds the irrigation portfolio, announced that the state government would expedite the building of Mekedatu dam across the river Cauvery.
The project is vital for Karnataka to supply drinking water to its capital, Bangalore. It was first approved by the then Siddaramaiah government in 2017. Tamil Nadu has opposed the dam as it feels it will reduce water flow to the state. Sources in the DMK said they expect the Congress leadership to respect Tamil sentiments on the issue just as the DMK respected the Congress leadership’s decisions on various issues, including the boycott of the inauguration ceremony of the new parliament building.
They said Cauvery water is a matter of life and death for the people of Tamil Nadu. The Supreme Court and the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal have noted that there is already enough storage facility in the Cauvery basin for the storage and distribution of water, they said, adding that there is, therefore, no pressing need for building an additional facility. Sources said that Shivakumar’s announcement notwithstanding, the decision on the dam would have to be taken at a political level by the Congress leadership.