Delhi BJP president Prof. Om Prakash Kohli is confident of wining majority of the Lok Sabha seats. In the outgoing Lok Sabha the party had only one seat from Delhi. This time it is going to win a majority of seats. Organiser correspondent Pramod Kumar spoke to Prof. Kohli to know the preparations and agenda of the party for forthcoming elections. Excerpts:
How do you look at the poll scenario in Delhi?
Keeping in view the public response it is clear that all our candidates have very well been received by the voters. The beginning of the campaigning is quite encouraging and we are going to perform very well this time.
How many seats will the party win?
I do not go by numbers. But I can say that we will have very good performance this time.
What is the biggest issue in this elections?
There are two major issues. One is the mess created by Sheila Dikshit Government in Delhi, and second is the utter failure of UPA government at the Centre. The Congress government failed to manage the growing Delhi. As a result, a number of problems generated, which are now beyond the control of the government. When we talk about the UPA government it is complete failure on security and economic fronts. Not only it failed to create new jobs, even the existed jobs are being snatched from the people. Youth are living under the shadow of anxiety. The UPA had promised to create one crore jobs every year, but instead they snatched lakhs of jobs. They failed to check the prices of essential commodities. The prices of sugar, milk, pulses, rice, etc. are skyrocketing. During the NDA government the prices of essential commodities were under control.
What about the 1984 anti-Sikh riots. The Congress had to replace two of its candidates due to it.
Congress made itself a laughing stock on this issue. This matter has been lingering on since 1984 and these two Congress leaders are accused in this case right from the day one. Even days before the CBI gave clean chit to Jagdish Tytler, the party announced their candidatures. Congress cannot now say that it proposed their names only after the CBI gave them clean chit. Knowing fully well that cases are pending against them, the Congress declared them as candidates. Fact is that the Congress not only remained insensitive to the sentiments of Sikhs, it hurt their feelings time and again. It was the BJP which in 1984 itself raised its voice against the massacre. Shri Vajpayee had then said that one could not target the entire community for the fault committed by one or two persons. You take action against those who are responsible for the crime, but you cannot target the whole community. Congress has been consistently hurting the feelings of Sikhs by declaring Jagdish Tytler and Sajjan Kumar as the Lok Sabha candidates. The CBI also chose the wrong time to give clean chit to them. It clearly sent the message that the CBI move was politically motivated. Now, on one hand the Congress withdrew its candidates, on the other hand it does not still confess its misdeeds. If Tytler and Sajjan Kumar did nothing wrong, why have they been withdrawn, and if they did wrong why no action is taken against them. By and large the step taken by the Congress will not repair the hurt sentiments of Sikhs.
Do you think this replacement of candidates by the Congress will benefit the BJP?
It is a different matter whether it will electorally benefit the BJP or not. One thing is clear it has placed the Congress in a very ridiculous situation. It might benefit the BJP but we are not interpreting this development in terms of electoral gains or losses.
Keeping in view the outcome of previous elections, can you ensure a united fight on the part of BJP this time?
In the Assembly, we did lose the elections due to many factors and those factors are definitely not going to work this time. Faces and issues are different. In the present political culture when different political parties work, there are ambitions and ego problems, which give rise to some sort of disharmony. This is part of the political culture. But we are going to take all necessary steps to see that the things are managed properly this time and the party gives a united fight.