Explainer: How BJP plans to achieve PM Modi’s victory target of 370 Lok Sabha seats : The Tribune India

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Explainer: How BJP plans to achieve PM Modi’s victory target of 370 Lok Sabha seats

West Bengal (42) to Odisha (21) to Telangana (17) to Andhra Pradesh (25) and Tamil Nadu (39) and the scope of 144 seats

Explainer: How BJP plans to achieve PM Modi’s victory target of 370 Lok Sabha seats

Prime Minister Narendra Modi. PTI photo

Tribune Web Desk

Vibha Sharma

Chandigarh, March 6

During his tour of states ahead of upcoming Lok Sabha elections, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday touched down in West Bengal, his second visit to the Trinamool Congress (TMC)-ruled state in less than a week. 

And as expected, the focus of his visit also was Sandeshkhali. 

Tearing into Mamata Banerjee’s government, the Prime Minister warned that the “storm of Sandeshkhali will reach every part of West Bengal”.

“Whatever happened in Sandeshkhali is a matter of shame. The TMC government is trying to protect the person responsible for this. However, they have received a setback from the High Court as well as the Supreme Court. The storm of Sandeshkhali will reach every part of West Bengal,” the Prime Minister was quoted as saying at the ‘Nari Shakti Vandan Abhinandan’ programme in Barasat.

Bengal and Tamil Nadu—frequently-visited destinations

By March 13, PM Modi would have addressed multiple rallies and unveiled multiple projects in states he is currently touring.

They include his frequently-visited opposition ruled states like Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Odisha and West Bengal—the states where the BJP is hoping to make maximum gains to shore up the target of 370 and 400-plus Lok Sabha seats set by Modi for the party and NDA alliance, respectively. 

PM also has a target of 42 seats for Bengal

At the top of the list of opposition-ruled states where the BJP believes it has maximum chance to add to the tally is West Bengal. 

During his earlier visit he not just attacked BJP’s main rival TMC and levelled allegations of scams and corruption, he also set a new target of 42 Lok Sabha seats for the BJP leadership in the state that sends 42 MPs to the Lower House.

Addressing a public meeting a couple of days back, the PM said, “Seeing you all gathered here in such huge numbers is giving me the confidence to say ‘NDA sarkar, 400 paar’. He then went on to tell the gathering that “lotus should bloom on all the 42 seats”.

According to political analyst Prashant Kishor, issues like Sandeshkhali are bound to dent the prospects of the ruling TMC.

“But with or without Sandeshkhali, the BJP is rising in Bengal. 2024 election result in Bengal will come as a surprise to many in Delhi who think BJP is finished in Bengal.

“In Tamil Nadu, BJP may for the first time break into double digits. In Telangana too, the BJP will do well,” he was quoted as saying. 

Meanwhile, as per a recent India TV-CNX opinion poll, the TMC is likely to win 21 seats and BJP 20 seats in the state if the Lok Sabha elections are held today. 

In 2019, TMC won 22 seats, BJP 18 and Congress two seats.

Odisha: 21 seats and PM’s ‘silence’

Though BJP and BJD leaders are both denying a possible tie-up between the two former allies, PM Modi’s “silence” on Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’s rule in public meetings, including on Tuesday, is keeping the speculations alive.

Instead, he targeted Congress and INDIA alliance over corruption, scams, governance and “parivarvad” (dynastic rule).

As of now the ruling BJD and opposition BJP are both accusing each other of spreading rumours regarding a potential alliance between the two parties ahead of the 2024 Lok Sabha elections. 

The opinion poll claims that Odisha is expected to witness a neck and neck if general elections are held today with Patnaik-led BJD winning 11 seats and BJP 10 seats. In 2019, BJP won 12 seats, BJP eight and Congress one seat.

Telangana, Andhra Pradesh and 42 seats

Andhra Pradesh (25) and Telangana (17) together account for 42 Lok Sabha seats.

Though the ruling Congress is projected as the single largest party in Telangana by the opinion poll which claims that BJP may win five seats, KCR-led BRS two and Asaduddin Owaisi’s AIMIM one seat.

In 2019, BRS (then TRS) won nine seats, BJP four, Congress three and AIMIM one.

So far as Andhra Pradesh, where Assembly and Parliament elections are held together like Odisha, opposition parties Telugu Desam Party (TDP)-Jana Sena Party (JSP) have concluded seat-sharing talks.

However, there has been no clarity on their alliance with BJP which is said to be weighing pros and cons of the alliance.

In 2019, the ruling YSR Congress won 22 seats and TDP three. 

According to Kishor, who managed YSRCP’ affairs in 2019, his gut feeling was that party chief YS Jagan Mohan Reddy will “lose big” in the upcoming state Assembly elections. 

However YSRCP leaders retaliated saying that Kishor’s “gut was unreliable” as he was speaking “without logical data and after meeting N Chandrababu Naidu, the TDP boss”.

Meanwhile independent observers believe that unlike Tamil Nadu, BJP has brighter chances and lesser issues in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.

Will Tamil Nadu (39) spring a surprise

Will BJP be able to spring a surprise in Tamil Nadu—a state where its attempts to connect with voters have not been so successful?

A couple of days back PM Modi was in Chennai, his fourth visit in the past three months in the state that is said to be among his frequently-visited states.

However, the BJP is also without a major alliance partner in the state dominated by Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam and the All India Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam. Though AIADMK was an NDA ally, it walked out last year.

However, according to the India TV-CNX survey, BJP may be in a position to secure five seats independently in Tamil Nadu where majority of voters (87.58 %) are said to be Hindus.

About The Author

The Tribune Web Desk brings you the latest news, analysis and insights from the region, India and around the world. Follow the Tribune Wed Desk for not just breaking news stories but wide-ranging coverage of events.

#Andhra Pradesh #BJP #Congress #Lok Sabha #Narendra Modi #Tamil Nadu #Telangana #Trinamool Congress #West Bengal

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