- The BJP, which has got majority on its own this time, is not dependent on any of its political ally
- The SAD has not performed the way it should have done keeping in view the Modi wave that swept major parts of the country
- The humiliating defeat of BJP leader Arun Jaitley in Amritsar is also likely to act as an irritant in relations between the two parties
- Sources say the BJP will become more assertive vis-à-vis the SAD and possibly dictate terms to it
- The SAD desperately needs BJP’s help at the national level to set Punjab’s deteriorating economic condition right
Sarbjit Dhaliwal, TNS—As part of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA), the SAD may not have the same political clout it enjoyed during the Vajpayee government. The BJP, which has got majority on its own this time, is not dependent on any of its political ally, which was not the case with the Vajpayee government.
Akalis Failed to Create Modi Wave in Punjab
Moreover, the SAD has not performed the way it should have been keeping in view the Modi wave that swept major parts of the country. The SAD has barely managed to repeat its performance of 2009. By securing two seats, its ally, the BJP has done better than the last time. In the given situation, the SAD leadership will not be in a position to press for slots in the Modi cabinet. During the Vajpayee government, it had got two ministries. Now, the BJP has enough of its own MPs to accommodate in the cabinet.
Arun Jaitley Defeat a Key Factor
Besides, the humiliating defeat of BJP leader Arun Jaitley in Amritsar is also likely to act as an irritant in relations between the two parties. To settle political scores with BJP leader Navjot Singh Sidhu, the SAD leadership had brought Jaitley to Amritsar by promising him a big win. However, when Jaitley confronted the ground realities in the election arena, he was reportedly taken aback.
Though he pulled out all stops to be in the contest, his campaign failed to counter the charisma of Capt Amarinder Singh because there was so much anti-incumbency factor at play. Had the ruling combine taken the issues raised by Sidhu about Amritsar in the right spirit, Jaitley would have been saved from the defeat.
Now because of his defeat, despite Modi wave in the country, his opponents in the BJP will be taking potshots at him. Though he is a member of the Rajya Sabha and will have no difficulty in getting an important ministry in the Modi Government, defeat in Amritsar will weigh on his mind for a long time.
It is expected that the BJP will become more assertive vis-à-vis the SAD and possibly dictate terms to it. The SAD desperately needs the BJP’s help at the national level to set Punjab’s deteriorating economic condition right. Chief Minister Parkash Badal has been saying that once the BJP formed its government at the Centre, all problems of Punjab will be resolved.