Creating a thread on putting BJP-RSS’ result in perspective and the lessons staring at us from the result. 1) In hindsight winning WB from 10% vote and 3 seats in previous VS has never been accomplished in history of India, except in Tripura which is a tiny state.
2) Getting to principal opposition from 3 seats is itself a significant feat. It took TMC 15 years to win WB, left about the same time even in coalition with Bangla Congress. So, going by established history anything more was out of question.
3) The goal was inconceivable also because BJP-RSS had no credible Bengali face. Its President Dilip Ghosh Ji is a dyed in a wool RSS man and accordingly hates Bengalis. He regularly abuses Bengalis eg…
4) In contrast during their growth phases both left and TMC had credible Bengali leadership. Still it took them 15 years. BJP-RSS did import Suvendu who can become a credible Bengali leader in due course, but the import was only 6 months back, so not enough time.
5) BJP-RSS secured 40.6 % votes in 2019 LS. Going by recent history, they drop 5% or more in state polls. So, yet again history was predicting their loss. They lost 1.5%, so again outperforming historical expectations.
6) From BJP-RSS’ PoV, they have not only emerged as the principal opposition but every other opposition in WB has vanished. In other words, TMC has secured every ounce of Cong-Left vote that was there to take.
7) Left has won literally 0 seats.Given their next generation being supplied by JNU, the Aishi Ghosh es,their alliance with openly Islamist parties,I do not see any prospect of their growth. So,the field is open for BJP to grow, increase vote share by a few points & win next term
8) At the same time getting the last few percentage points in vote share may be challenging for BJP. Because of its essential make. RSS. The force that is inimical to Bengalis and hates Bengalis ethnically, not merely their politics. So, they won’t resonate with Bengalis.
9) RSS produces leaders like Dilip Ghosh, Tathagata Roy, who are Bengalis only by birth. They hate Bengalis to the extent that they can’t conceal that hatred. Exact same statement can be made of Bengali-born foot soldiers of RSS. They were abusing Bengalis even during campaign!
10) RSS blueprint for Bengal is bound to be inadequate because they just don’t get Bengali culture. All that RSS understands by Hinduism is casteism, following Hindi belt ethos. Accordingly, they decided to discover a subaltern Hindutva in Bengal where caste barely exists.
11) RSS has no idea what a Bengali understands by Bhadrolok. RSS hates Bhadroloks and decided to demonize Bhadroloks in an attempt to consolidate lower castes. They don’t get that there is no casteism among Hindu Bengalis & that society is integrated.
12)What RSS don’t get is that blue collar workers like maids are often parts of Bengali families even those that are upper castes.They exchange neighborly gossips & caste do not interfere into these daily equations.Ignorant of these RSS planned a social engineering around castes!
13) RSS sought to appear as savior of backward castes from imagined persecution by Bhadraloks. They imagined a massive Hindutva wave among “subalterns”, blissfully unaware of 0 evidence towards the same. They could not offer Bengalis anything new & got only the -ve votes.
14) In order to get the elusive points in vote share, BJP needs to get a credible Hindu Bengali leader who is connected to the ground, and therefore from outside RSS stable. Those raised by RSS won’t be connected to soil of Bengal.
15) A credible Bengali leadership is of essence simply because an average Bengali does not connect to Hindi even when he follows it. The leader should be somewhat civilized, Bhadro, unlike a Dilip Ghosh, if only 2 create a contrast with Mamata.
16) Suvendu Adhikari is a good bet. He ran a good campaign, only one to talk of an otherwise ignored issue which counts on ground, eg, OBC reservation priority between Hindus & Muslims. Rest talked of petty corruption, no 1 believes that BJP would be clean.
17) Suvendu is a good speaker in Bangla. And he isn’t abusive in his speeches, won’t repel decent folks, but is colorful. Has a base of his own. The result is for all to see. No 1 else could defeat Mamata. PS: TMC won by a huge margin in Mamata’s original seat, Bhabanipur.
18) TMC won by a huge margin in Mamata’s original seat, Bhabanipur, despite a sizable presence of Hindi speakers (BJP’s vote bank in WB) and very few religious minorities. Her loss in Nandigram reflects creditably on Suvendu.
19) BJP should make Suvendu leader of the opposition and see if he can become the Himanta Biswa Sharma in the next VS polls.
20) PS: Babul Supriyo is a Bollywood ia mediocre. After a massive loss, he has started questioning judgment of Bengalis. If you can’t identify with your electorate, you won’t win. Period. BJP needs to stay away from Bollywood. Leaders emerge through politics.
21) When RSS central leadership was imagining a “subaltern Hindutva”, why did no1 in WB BJP correct them?Ans: The long time leaders are all products of RSS stable. Neither do they know Bengal any more, nor do they dare 2 speak truth 2 power. And power in RSS is always the NW belt
22) More specifically,RSS trains its products to look up to and obey those from North&West of India (the Hindi belt, Marathis, Gujaratis, Marwaris). If they posit something, it has 2 be true even if u (assuming if u) see otherwise. If they say “subaltern Hindutva”, it must be so.
23) If BJP is to win Bengal, the leadership must come from outside RSS. In Assam for example both Himanta Biswa Sharma and Sarbananda Sonowal are from outside RSS.

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More from @sarkar_swati

3 May
My analysis that left would get a rasagolla was based on 2 simple expectations: 1) the remaining Hindu vote of left would be appalled at the alliance with the Furfura party 2) the Muslim vote would consolidate 4 whoever is most likely to stop BJP, that is Mamata in WB.
The Muslim consolidation for the party most likely to defeat BJP was bound to happen,polarizing speech or not.Good politics was not to deny reality but to anticipate it & design ur messaging accordingly. In BJP, only Suvendu did that, rest were all campaigning on petty corruption
Finally, what a Rasagolla was it for the left ! All their current stalwarts, Surjokanto, Sujon bit dust in their bastions, their recent upstarts, the JNU products like Dipsita Dhar and Aishi Ghosh were in the same “humble pie” boat. Heartening outcome!
Read 6 tweets
3 May
Ratna Chatterjee won on TMC ticket from Kolkata. Happy about that. I am not too fond of a man (or a woman for that matter) who leaves his wife (or husband) for another. The Shovan-Baisakhi drama was tiring. A public space without the duo is healthier & calmer.
Regardless of the result, BJP’s denial of ticket to Shovan from the seat that Ratna had contested on was the right thing to do. The political campaign would have become a circus. Not exactly sure what was Baisakhi’s claim to ticket in an adjoining seat. Teen-ager behavior.
In the court of public opinion, a woman (or man) deserted by her husband (or his wife) for another, always wins. This is the simple reality that both TMC & BJP understood. If you want to hold an elected public office, start with by respecting your marriage.
Read 4 tweets
2 Apr
Everyone would say that BJP-RSS won Bengal (I think it will) through a politics of religious polarization. True. But how could they polarize so easily? They barely had any org 5 years back. Communists took 20 years to win power even in coalition +
Never seen the question as to the why of the success of BJP-RSS’ politics of polarization across castes addressed. It is because religion is a major fault line in Indian society at a social and cultural level, not among elites but among middle class to below, far more than caste
Bengal is no exception. All those who spread reams of ink or bytes on how “secular” Bengalis are, both left, BJP-RSS, just do not know the Bengali society from a commoners’ point of view. They have not even talked with common people I suspect, or may even be lying.
Read 14 tweets
21 Mar
Several of the Abrahamic religions I am aware of prescribe starkly unequal of treatment of believers&disbelievers, both in this world and after death. So, God will punish u if u don’t believe in him. Philosophical question-How exactly is this equality of man in the eyes of God?
This is perhaps an early documentation of viewpoint discrimination,specifically viewpoint of believing in 1 particular concept of God. In contrast, Indic religions espouse the concept of Karma, deeds.Their belief-Karma applies regardless of which God u believe in.This is equality
It is historically documented how over time repeatedly heretics have been persecuted by practitioners of Abrahamic religions just for being heretics, that is, on account of divergence of their belief from what the texts espoused. Is this practiced equality ?
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18 Mar
Never ever speak to any media without maintaining your records. A thread on my experience with media. My first interaction with media. In 2013, a filmmaker contacted me to get my comments on a movie she was making on Modi & Hindus. I was interviewed on video+
Subsequently, the filmmaker sent me documents that I should sign so that she can use the video interview any manner she wants to. I demanded that I have the right to see how she uses my statements, that is after she uses it. She refused and I did not sign.
Second, Newslaundry contacted me 4 my comments on a hit piece they would write against me.I interacted only on email and insisted that they reproduce my statements in full.They agreed and complied grudgingly. In the piece,they mention grudgingly that she asked 2 be reproduced...
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17 Mar
Some facts on Sheikh Mujibur Rehman post 1971. Ramana Kalibari used to be a five century old temple in Dhaka.During 1971 Pakistani army committed mass atrocities in the temple, which included destruction of the temple, burning to death 50 cows in its cowshed, forcible conversion+
+ abduction of women & murder of men who took shelter in the temple + m. After Mujibur Rehman got power courtesy Indian army, he returned the land of the temple not to the original owners but to Bangladesh public works which removed the last vestiges of the temple from the land+
Hindus have now been granted permission to build the temple, not at the original site, but some distance away. Accounts here………
Read 4 tweets

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