By Kajol Singh | INNLIVE
ANALYSIS BJP's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi is visible everywhere—television, print and online. BJP's poster boy promises to change the lives of people if voted to power. Riding on the wave of Gujarat's development model he raises many expectations and a hope that he is the real change that the voters of India so desperately desire.
But, is this a reality or just a media created hype which is shining for just a few. Modi opponents claim that Modi bubble would burst like India Shining campaign.
NDA's 'India Shining' campaign of 2004 was talked about as the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government's bid to retain power through its sumptuous and flashy ad blitzkrieg. 'India Shining' is often dubbed as one of the biggest reasons for the NDA government's failure to return to power at the Centre.
Critics of the campaign say the blitz crashed because of its "lopsided" focus on urban growth story while neglecting the distress and backwardness of the rural landscape. India Shining campaign was brain child of late Pramod Mahajan. While the exact amount spent on the campaign is still not clear, some estimates put the ad blitz's worth around Rs. 150 crore. It was implemented by Grey Worldwide.
Defenders of the campaign, however, continue to tout it as a good idea that was perhaps failed by the product (the NDA government).
The success or failure of the Modi campaign will be judged on May 16, but many believe that BJP is at an advantage this time as compared to Lok Sabha polls of 2004.
UPA II and not NDA facing anti-incumbency
Ten years of UPA rule and the myriad of corruption scandals and scam seem to have disappointed the voters. Industry and corporate sector is disappointed by the alleged inertia maintained by the government. Industry is looking for a direction and people want someone who inspires honesty. So, this gives Modi a big advantage and despite Congress claiming to have taken many steps to curb corruption, voters seem unimpressed.
'India Shining campaign failed as it didn't reflect reality', but Modi has a strong track record
Narendra Modi has a strong track record as chief minister of Gujarat. He has been able to prop up image of Gujarat at national and international level. He hails from a poor family and managed to come this far on the basis of his sheer will and hard work. The climate for business and investment is considered very conducive in Gujarat.
Modi speaks on all major issues and knows how to connect to the masses. He has become a mass leader which is reflected by the huge crowd that throng to attend his rallies.
He has proved himself as an administrator capable of delivering even when faced with tough situations.
NDA in 2004 fought the battle on Television, But Modi reaches out to people
Many believe that India Shining campaign could not go beyond Pramod Mahajan’s laptop and advertisement campaigns. Rural voter was left alone. NDA did not realise that communication methods to reach out to the rural and the poor are different. You need to meet them, talk to them, and build a network of committed workers who bring voters to the polling booth.
NDA remained happy seeing the ‘India shining’ on Television sets. But, Modi has carefully avoided making this mistake. He kept working in Gujarat for more than a decade before showing his national ambitions. Media rather hated him for many years, but Modi kept developing his relations with the masses. He has invested in human resource and an army of devoted supporters work for him behind the scenes.
Modi rarely gives interview and communicates directly to masses when he addresses his rallies. BJP campaign is weaved around him and he is extensively marketing Brand Modi across the nation.
Only Narenda Modi is strong PM candidate
No one is close to him when it comes to naming prime ministerial candidate, believe experts. Rahul Gandhi is far behind, Third front at best ends up confusing the voters right now, and Arvind Kejriwal is vying for attention only. So, this gives huge advantage to Narendra Modi.
It is too risky to predict sweep for any candidate or political party at this crucial junction, but one thing is clear: Narendra Modi’s campaign is not confined to television alone and BJP seems to have learnt from the debacle of India Shining campaign.