BJP’s ‘nationalist’ manifesto; are political parties using the populist approach?

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    BJP's ‘nationalist’ manifesto; are political parties using the populist approach?

    BJP finally ended the suspense by presenting its election 2019 manifesto amid much fanfare today.

    Titled ‘Sankalpit bharat, Sashakt bharat’, the manifesto touches upon all issues of importance – farmers, youth, healthcare, education, security, Infrastructure, women issues, armed forces etc.

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    Calling it a vision document, Union Minister, Rajnath Singh, presented it in the presence of party’s top brass. Among many things, it called out for zero tolerance to terrorism and promised to double farmer income by 2022. According to BJP, the manifesto was committed to nationalism and good governance.

    However, Congress was quick to launch an attack and said that the BJP had failed to mention ‘employment and jobs’ in the manifesto while Delhi CM and AAP leader Arvind Kejriwal called it a fresh set of ‘jumlas’.

    What primarily has come out from the manifestos of both Congress and BJP, is a high level of competitive populist approach. Schemes and initiatives that are targeted at the larger base of Indians and to woo the voter bank.

    For example, each party has tried to ensure a substantial deal for farmers – a large voting population. Whether it is possible in the present economic and fiscal circumstances, has not been answered.

    For the ‘aam aadmi’ what is important right now is political stability, continuation of reforms and completion of schemes and promises made to them. Promising and executing are two extremes. And the party that ultimately forms the government has to ensure they do not disappoint the electorate that believed and voted for them.