25 January, 2021

Modi’s Micro Battles

There’s a problem with accepting a Modi victory as certain

AP
Modi’s Micro Battles
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

Even before the campaign process has reached its full momentum in the state of Gujarat, three generalisations dominate the marketplace of political ideas about its consequences: a) that a third-time victory for chief minister Narendra Modi in Gujarat is nearly certain; b) since this victory is a foregone conclusion, the time is ripe for a national role for Modi, possibly as the next PM; c) that this victory is likely to be a direct outcome of ‘good governance’, understood primarily as robust economic growth, delivered under Modi’s leadership.

I see this approach as problematic for two reasons: in terms of method, it seems that QED has been etched in even before one could see the proof of what one set out to examine. More importantly, however, there is a certain naivete in this formulation that leads us to a complacence in examining the very complicated and nuanced role of electoral competition currently being witnessed in this state. I engage myself with unravelling this second strand, as viewed in the terrain of practical politics, analysing the complex...

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