The six-time winner in the state of Gujarat, the BJP party will continue to face challenges from Patidar community ahead like it has faced earlier from Jats in Haryana and Maratha in Maharashtra. This is based on the fact that in recently concluded Gujarat elections, BJP faced the electoral setback in Patidar-dominant areas of Saurashtra, reports The Indian Express. So Congress was able to get support from Patidar community in the Gujarat Polls. Similarly, the Jat community in Haryana and Maratha community in Maharashtra are other two communities which BJP have to consider in the general elections due in 2019.
Marathas account for 35 percent of the population in Maharashtra with powerful Maratha leaders like Sharad Pawar who are neither short on resources nor muscle to make things difficult for the BJP. The 21 percent Jats are the single largest caste-group in Haryana. The Patidar movement and its impact on Gujarat election results may not only inspire these communities but could also nudge BJP’s rivals to tap dominant castes anxieties in both states. Unlike UP where the dominant Yadav community leadership did not court the Jat community during elections early this year, BJP’s rivals in Haryana and Maharashtra are likely to tap into the simmering political anxieties of the community in both the states.
The BJP clinched the Gujarat Assembly polls sixth time in a row, winning 99 seats in the 182-member House. In Himachal Pradesh, the BJP won 44 seats, slightly short of a two-thirds majority in the 68-member House.
With the Congress showing better than projected performance in Gujarat, BJP leader Subramanian Swamy said the public has given the saffron party “some wake up call” and hoped that the party would do some introspection. “I think what we need now is more people, who are at grassroots and can mobilise the public in public meetings, should be given more responsibilities in the party and not those who are just technicians,” he said.