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Politics Yearender 2022: From BJP’s record win in Gujarat to splitsville in Maharashtra and Bihar, and a Bharat Jodo triumph

Let us take a look at the unexceptional political events that were witnessed in India in 2022

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politics yearender 2022

By Divyansh Thakur

With 2022 coming to an end, the Narendra Modi government has just one-and-a-half years left in its second term. That leaves hopes that 2023 will see heightened political activity with the Congress’s Bharat Jodo Yatra coming up with better than expected public support.

The political sphere has been full of upheavals during the last one year. Many assembly elections and bypolls were held where the states witnessed changes in regime. Some regimes changed when a party either split or chose to swap partners, like in Maharashtra and Bihar, respectively.

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No surprises in spring Assembly results

In March, the election results of Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Goa and Manipur were out. The BJP retained power in Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Goa and Manipur. The Aam Aadmi Party wiped out the opposition in Punjab and formed its first government outside Delhi. By the end of the year, new governments were formed in two more states, Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat. While the BJP registered a record victory in Gujarat, the tradition of changing the ruling party remained intact in Himachal Pradesh, with the Congress putting up a strong showing.

All eyes were on Uttar Pradesh as people were expecting a change, but the results surprised everyone. Under the leadership of Yogi Adityanath, the BJP once again retained power in the state. The Congress’s strong pre-poll showing in Uttarakhand didn’t amount to much as Pushkar Singh Dhami returned as CM of a rampant BJP.

Mann to Mann in Punjab

The results of the Punjab Assembly elections were unexpected. The ruling Congress in Punjab had to face a humiliating defeat. The way in which the Aam Aadmi Party government was formed under the leadership of Arvind Kejriwal in Delhi, the same result was seen in the Punjab elections.

Bhagwant Mann swearing in as Chief Minister of Punjab.

The ruling Congress was brutally defeated here. The Aam Aadmi Party won 92 of the total 117 seats in the state and Bhagwant Mann  was sworn in as Chief Minister. The Congress and the Shiromani Akali Dal were left blinking in the AAP  tsunami that smashed all regional and family loyalties in Punjab.

Read Also: Uttarakhand: Group of college girls fight each other in the middle of the road in Roorkee, video viral | WATCH

Security lapse during PM Modi’s Punjab visit

On January 5, 2022, Prime Minister Narendra Modi was on his Punjab tour when some farmer protesters blocked the road in Ferozepur on which the Prime Minister’s motorcade was to pass.

PM Modi stuck was on flyover for 15-20 mins’ – Serious security lapse in PM Modi’s security: MHA takes cognisance

Because of this, the Prime Minister was stuck on a flyover for 20 minutes. The Prime Minister returned to Delhi after the incident. He neither attended any programme nor could he address his first rally in the state after two years. This was a major security lapse.

Historic victory of BJP in Gujarat, Congress in Himachal Pradesh

Results for the assembly elections in Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh were out in early December. The people of Himachal Pradesh voted out the ruling BJP and voted in the Congress with a majority. Some say the state alternates between the two parties in a long-standing custom.

In Gujarat, the BJP registered a historic victory by winning 157 of the 182 seats. This was the first time in the history of Gujarat that a political party has registered a huge victory.

Hijab: To wear or not to wear it

This controversy started from a government inter-college in Udupi, Karnataka. Muslim girl students were said to have violated a new government order mandating a dress code by wearing a hijab.

This saw many saffron organisations blockade Muslim institutions while the Muslim girls were no pushovers either. The case against this reached the High Court and the Supreme Court, the apex court returned a split verdict with one judge upholding the government mandate and the other supporting the right of Muslim girls to wear the hijab.

Nupur Sharma and the Prophet

Nupur Sharma, a BJP spokesperson, made a lot of headlines this year. She made a controversial comment on Prophet Muhammad during a TV debate leading to demonstrations against Nupur Sharma across the country.

Violence took place in many parts of the country. Later, Nupur Sharma had to resign due to this controversial statement and BJP suspended her from the party for 6 years.

Shiv Sena Split

Maharashtra’s Maha Vikas Aghadi government headed by Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray was derailed mid-term by Shiv Sena minister Eknath Shinde and 28 party MLAs. They camped in Gujarat and then to Guwahati, hosted by Assam CM Himanta Biswa Sarma. 

Initially, the Thackeray faction tried to pacify them, but in the end the Shiv Sena split and Uddhav Thackeray was out of power. After this Shiv Sena rebel Eknath Shinde formed his government with the support of the BJP. The legal battle between the two factions is still going on for the name and symbol of the party, which was one of the big surprises of 2022. The party had been cast in a monolith form by its founder Bal Thackeray, now split into factions though nephew Raj Thackeray had already struck out on his own in the patriarch’s lifetime.

Nitish glues up Mahagathbandhan again

Politics in Bihar lives true to the idiom which says 2 plus 2 need not be 4 all the time. The relations between the BJP and the JDU broke down and Nitish Kumar left the BJP and joined forces with old ally Lalu Prasad Yadav’s RJD.

In a single move, Nitish took the oath of the post of CM again by dissolving the entire cabinet and forming a grand alliance, pushing his ally BJP to the opposition. In Nitish’s new cabinet, Tejashwi Yadav returned as Deputy CM and his elder brother Tej Pratap Yadav became a cabinet minister.

The unpopular front

The government banned the Popular Front of India (PFI) in September and arrested more than 100 active members. The organisation was banned for allegedly being involved in terrorist activities.

According to a notification issued by the Home Ministry, the Central Government was apprehensive that the PFI and its affiliates have been involved in destructive acts affecting public order, undermining the constitutional framework of the country and terror-based governance is being encouraged. Also trying to implement it. PFI was formed on November 22, 2006 in Kozhikode, Kerala.

Beating Nitish at his own game but this time in Manipur

In Manipur this year, the Janata Dal United, the party of Bihar CM Nitish Kumar, suffered a severe blow.

Five JDU MLAs switched sides and joined the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). K Meghjit Singh, Secretary of the Manipur Legislative Assembly, issued a statement in this regard. Significantly, JDU had won 6 of the 38 seats in the Assembly elections held in March this year.

A non-Gandhi Congress chief

2022’s signal achievement for the Congress was an open election for its president. Mallikarjun Kharge became the first non-Gandhi president of the party after 24 years and after Sitaram Kesri.

Mallikarjun Kharge defeated Shashi Tharoor by a huge margin. Kharge got a total 7,897 votes while Shashi Tharoor won 1,072 votes. Many will dispute how Kharge, a Gandhi family loyalist, can be seen as an independent leader. Kharge’s newfound enthusiasm was seen in the Gujarat campaign where his quote on Ravan was misrepresented to the people by the BJP and ended up nearly decimating the Congress performance there.

Bharat Jodo Yatra

Rahul Gandhi’s Bharat Jodo Yatra made a lot of headlines this year. Initially dismissed by both the media and the BJP, the increasing numbers joining the yatra made both of them sit up and take note. Such a padayatra is taking place in Indian politics after a long time. This journey started from Kanyakumari on September 7, 2022. Covering a distance of 3,570 km in 150 days, the journey will end in Srinagar.

Opposition unity which will be needed for the 2024 campaign was fractious when the yatra wound its way through Kerala. The CPI(M) which runs the Kerala government was quick to point out the yatra was not taking UP and Gujarat seriously and was hurting Opposition unity by hurting the CPI(M). But the yatra persevered, Rahul Gandhi grew a longish beard a la Forrest Gump but unlike Forrest, the man’s resolve grew with each step. Snaking through the South, the Vindhyas and into the Hindi belt to a grand entry into Delhi. But like Nizamuddin  Auliya’s message to Muhammad bin Tughlaq: Hanuz Dilli Dur Ast. The yatra’s fine and grand, but votes will tilt the scales in 2024.

Uttarakhand: Group of college girls fight each other in the middle of the road in Roorkee, video viral | WATCH

CBI reopens probe against Lalu Prasad Yadav in railway projects corruption case

2024 Lok Sabha Elections

Amit Shah claims NDA has already got 310 seats after 5 phases of Lok Sabha elections

Shah was addressing 2 election rallies in Sambalpur where the BJP has fielded Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan.

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Amit Shah claims NDA has already got 310 seats after 5 phases of Lok Sabha elections

Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Tuesday claimed that the NDA has already bagged 310 seats after the completion of 5 phases of the Lok Sabha polls. He urged the people of Odisha to free the state from babu-raj and allow the BJP to form government at the Centre and also in the state.  Shah was addressing 2 election rallies in Sambalpur where the BJP has fielded Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan.

Shah claimed after the 5th phase of elections, the NDA has already got 310 seats and they will secure 400 plus seats after the 6th and 7th rounds of elections. The union home minister added that Odisha has been ruled by a handful of officers and this election will end the ongoing babu raj in the state.

He said that the tribals of Keonjhar get no benefit even though most of the mines and mineral reserves of the country are located in Keonjhar district. Shah enlisted Modi government’s achievements and said that the prime minister has ensured that there is no terrorism across the country. He added that PoK (Pakistan occupied Kashmir) was with India and it would remain with India.

Shah criticized Congress of being frightened over Pakistan possessing an atom bomb and said PM Modi has given a befitting reply to Pakistan’s terror activities and he does not fear such threat of nuclear bombs. He attacked the previous Congress government for doing nothing for tribals. Shah pointed out that former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee had formed a separate ministry for tribal affairs while Narendra Modi as the PM has worked to eliminate Naxalism in Odisha, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.

The Union Home Minister said PM Modi has constituted District Mineral Foundation and given crores of rupees for the development of the tribal region. Shah said the budgetary allocation for tribal affairs has been increased to Rs 1.25 lakh crore during Modi government from Rs 25,000 crore given during the previous UPA regime.

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2024 Lok Sabha Elections

Congress accuses PM Modi of communal campaigning, questions his silence on key issues like caste census, reservations

Congress general secretary Jairam Ramesh’s attack came over Modi’s remarks in an interview to the media in which he had said that he has never uttered a word against minorities, and the BJP has not just today but never acted against them.

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Congress accuses PM Modi of communal campaigning, questions his silence on key issues like caste census, reservations

The Congress on Tuesday alleged that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had been indulging in polarisation throughout the election and has prepared a communal pitch, but Congress refused to play on that and pursued its paach nyay agenda. Congress general secretary Jairam Ramesh’s attack came over Modi’s remarks in an interview to the media in which he had said that he has never uttered a word against minorities, and the BJP has not just today but never acted against them.

Jairam Ramesh said that PM Modi’s entire campaign from April 19 has been based on communalisation with the Hindu-Muslim rhetoric throughout and has not talked about Viksit Bharat, issues of the farmers, Modi ki guarantee, women, youth workers, SCs, STs and OBCs.

Speaking about the remarks made by PM Modi on minorities, Ramesh said what nonsense was he talking about?  He further added the prime minister is fast losing his memory and he has never had any adherence to truth. Ramesh called PM Modi a jhoothjeevi and said PM Modi does not remember what he said the day before and then claims that he never said it.

Ramesh said the prime minister had raised the issue of Muslim League imprint on the Congress manifesto, the mangalsutra remarks and the allegation that the Congress will give reservations on the basis of religion, which are all bogus statements.

He said this is the prime minister who, when asked some years ago whether he had any remorse at the killings during the Gujarat riots, said even when a small puppy comes under a car, one feels bad. This is the language that he had been using. Ramesh claimed that when Atal Bihari Vajapayee became the prime minister, L K Advani and company wanted a committee to review the basic structure of the Constitution. Ramesh said Congress boycotted that commission and this has always been the objective of the BJP and the RSS.

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Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal criticises Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s remark on AAP

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Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal criticises Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s remark on AAP

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Tuesday criticised Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s remarks, where he allegedly claimed that maximum supporters of the Chief Minister are from Pakistan. The AAP national convenor asked the Union Home Minister not to abuse the people of the country and instead abuse him.

Addressing a press conference, the Chief Minister said there were less than 500 people at the meeting held by Amit in Delhi yesterday. Mentioning that people of Delhi voted for AAP with 62 seats, Arvind Kejriwal questioned if all the people from Delhi are Pakistanis. 

He added that in Punjab, people voted AAP to power in 92 out of 117 seats. He also mentioned that the people of Gujarat have given us 14 per cent votes. He then questioned whether all these people are Pakistanis?

Furthermore, he also stated that in Panchayat and Municipality elections in Uttar Pradesh, Assam, Madhya Pradesh and in several parts of the country, the Aam Aadmi Party has got elected as Panch, Sarpanch, Municipal Mayor, Councillors.

Sharing a video on social media, Arvind Kejriwal argued that Amit Shah’s behavior was unacceptable. Despite BJP’s refusal, the Delhi CM said that the Prime Minister has chosen Amit Shah as his successor, but he has turned so arrogant at this that he has started abusing and threatening people.

Arvind Kejriwal added that Amit Shah will not be the Prime Minister because the Bharatiya Janata Party will be losing the Lok Sabha elections. He asserted that Amit Shah will not become PM because, on June 4, people are not voting for the BJP. The BJP is on its way out, and it should stop being so arrogant and stop abusing people, he continued.

Arvind Kejriwal further asked Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, who also came to Delhi, that he should focus on the enemies within his party instead of abusing him.

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