The new friendship between the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Secular Janata Party (JDS) may give the BJP an upper hand in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls. National hopes to stem losses in JDS-held areas and, as history shows, it will eventually be able to win over the same voter base for itself.
After much deliberation between the two ideologically different parties, the HD Devegowda family-led JDS joined the Bharatiya Janata Party-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) on September 22. BJP leaders celebrated the alliance and as BS Yediyurappa wrote, “Together we will build a stronger NDA and a new India.”
“Political Game Changer”
Former chief minister Basavaraj Bommai said the alliance would be a “political game-changer” in Karnataka. JDS leader HD Kumaraswamy also said he believed the alliance would “solve many pressing issues facing the country”.
The BJP, which won 25 out of 28 seats in the last Lok Sabha polls, wants to leave no stone unturned to ensure that the party does not lose seats and compete head-on with the Congress, which recently scored a landslide victory in the Assembly. The state’s polls. Through this alliance, the BJP is vying to exploit the JDS’s stronghold in the Vokkaliga voter base and make strong inroads in the old Mysuru region that it has not been able to capture so far, even at the cost of a handful of seats.
“When two political parties have a common enemy, that brings them together, and given that the Congress did defeat the BJP in the assembly elections, I think the BJP saw one way to challenge the Congress. Come together with JDS. In a sense, this is a concession for the BJP because even if they concede only four seats to JDS, they will only contest the seats they won last time, which shows The party is not in a stronger position than they are. That was in 2019,” said political analyst Sandeep Shastri.
The BJP has a history of benefiting from Janata Dal’s vote bank. After the split in the BJP in 1998-99, when former chief minister Ramakrishna Hegde Lok Shakti Party formed an alliance with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Lingayat A large part of the (Lingayat) vote bank went to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and it remains a stronghold of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) even now.
Shastri said, “BJP’s bigger plan is to make Karnataka a bipolar state, pitting them against the Congress. One way to achieve this is to ally with the JDS and Marginalizing them in the process.” He added that as history shows, this time around, the JDS’s Vokkaliga vote base can not only shift to the BJP in the upcoming elections but also in subsequent elections. transfer.
Just as the BJP has a history of gaining vote banks, the JDS also has a history of losing vote banks due to its alliances. The 2019 alliance between the Congress and the JDS proved to be beneficial to the Congress in the long run as it was able to make significant inroads in the Old Mysuru region in the 2023 Assembly elections.
“The JDS seems to have chosen an existential gamble. Given that they want a chance to embarrass the Congress, an alliance with the BJP is imminent. But this is more of a short-term advantage and one wonders if the JDS is counting on its The long-term impact of what is being done,” Shastri said.