The results of the assembly elections in five states will definitely have a massive impact on the national level. The outcome of the unpredictable contest in West Bengal turned out to be the most stunning and remarkable with the Trinamool Congress, led by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, fighting off the stiff challenge posed by the BJP, and coming out on top. The BJP used everything to win Bengal but the TMC came back with a bigger margin and more seats. The result has intrigued the whole nation and it definitely will have emboldened the beleaguered opposition.
It was expected that the BJP would retain power in Assam, the Left Democratic Front (LDF) would secure a second term in Kerala, the DMK-led alliance would topple the AIADMK government in Tamil Nadu and there would be a regime change in Puducherry. The elections were held in two extremities of the country – northeastern and southern regions – which are on the margins of national politics. The politics and the electoral considerations in the Northeast and the east and in the deep south are also different from one another. But the outcome will have a bearing on national politics, and may set directions for politics and governance in the near future. Mamata Banerjee’s stature will rise and she may be considered the leader best equipped to challenge the BJP, leading to a proposed federal front. Also, with Covid-19 ravaging the country and government found wanting due to complete mismanagement, the image of the BJP and PM Narendra Modi has taken a beating. Witnessing the stunning victory of the TMC in Bengal, the o
pposition will surely sense an opportunity to defeat the formidable BJP in 2024. It is a long way, but the Bengal election has opened a window of hope and opportunity to the beleaguered opposition.