Senior Congress leader Shashi Tharoor claimed on Friday that it was “impossible” for the BJP to replicate its 2019 electoral victory in 2024, adding that it was “conceivable” that the ruling party could lose in the lower house. 50 seats”.
The Trivandrum MP, who was speaking at the Kerala Literary Festival here, said that while he acknowledged the BJP’s dominance, it was true that they lost many states and it was not impossible for them to lose the central government.
“If you look at how they (BJP) are doing in 2019, they basically have all the seats in Haryana, Gujarat, Rajasthan; or in Bihar, MPs (Madhya Pradesh) , all but one seat in Maharashtra; and 18 seats in Bengal.
“Now, all these results cannot be replicated and BJP’s fall below the majority in 2024 is entirely possible,” Mr Tharoor said in a session titled “India@75: Walking Through Democracy”.
Referring to the Pulwama attack and the Balakot strike, which he said sparked a “huge wave” at the last minute – a “freak” that will not be repeated in 2024 – the 66-year-old said 50 people fell Party seats and opposition interests are entirely “conceivable”.
However, Tharoor predicted that the important question of whether the opposition would unite in defeating the BJP in a majority, which he said was “unanswerable”.
“If the BJP is 250 and the others are 290… will the 290 agree? Or the BJP will be able to pick 20 and 10 from the parties that were hoping for support from the central government at the time and form a government. We don’t know,” He said.
In the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, the BJP won 303 of the 543 seats, while Congress only won 52.
Referring to the challenges India faces after 75 years of independence, Tharoor, while acknowledging dynasticism in democracies as a “challenge”, said those who singled out his party should also look across the country.
Ironically, at the extremes of the political spectrum, every party seems to have dynastic politics, he argues, with the exception of “the Communists and the BJP”.
“When we point and say ‘Parliament dynasty’… look around the country, what you see is Mulayam Singh (Yadav) succeeded by his son, Lalu Prasad Yadav succeeded by his son, Karunanidhi succeeded by his son Bal Thackeray’s successor is his son Sharad Pawar…
Hailed as one of Asia’s largest literary events, the Kerala Literary Festival brings together literary and cultural icons including Nobel Laureates, Booker Prize-winning authors, veteran politicians, historians, film personalities, diplomats and artist.
Speakers include 2022 Booker Prize winner Shehan Karunatilaka, Nobel laureates Ada Yonath and Abhijit Banerjee, American Indologist Wendy Doniger, actor Kamal Haasan, children’s author Sudha Murty and veteran singer Usha Uthup.
(Aside from the title, this story is unedited by NDTV staff and published via a syndicated feed.)
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