Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot has once again started making his presence felt in Gujarat in view of the upcoming Assembly elections. He is working hard to woo Gujarati voters for the Congress, showcasing his government’s achievements. Like 2018, the Congress has deployed Rajasthan’s leaders in every single assembly seat in Gujarat. The BJP has also deployed its leaders from Rajasthan in Gujarat.
The grand old party is focussing on rural areas. The Congress strategists believe that Congress is likely to gain advantage in urban areas where AAP may be in a position to dent the BJP’s vote bank. The BJP has fielded all union ministers from Rajasthan, state BJP president Satish Puniya, more than 100 office-bearers, MPs, MLAs and leaders from Rajasthan in Gujarat.
Rajasthan’s Udaipur is situated close to Gujarat border. More than 25 lakh Rajasthanis live in Gujarat, who have tremendous clout in some pockets. Last time, Gehlot worked in such a manner that the Congress was on the verge of victory. The party has given Gehlot responsibility of senior observer in Gujarat. Gehlot had appointed senior Rajasthan leader Raghu Sharma as in charge of Gujarat. However, Sharma’s certain statements angered some senior leaders. The remarks made by Hardik Patel, who left the Congress, for Sharma harmed the party as well. Gehlot had to face turbulence in Rajasthan at a time when he had just started working on a new strategy for Gujarat. Entire party had to suffer a lot due to conspiracy against Gehlot. No doubt, attempts were made to create differences between Gehlot and the Gandhi family. But after knowing the truth, the Gandhis later reposed faith on Gehlot. Congress president Mallikarjuna Kharge was already backing Gehlot.
Congress’ strategy in Gujarat is to work silently in rural pockets. PM Narendra Modi had himself said that Congress was working silently in villages. The dearth of heavyweight leaders is the only problem that the Congress is facing in Gujarat. BJP has weakened Congress hugely in the state. The saffron party is still concerned over the silent working of the Congress. The BJP is seeing Congress as the real challenger. AAP campaign may have peaked like Uttarakhand, but the voters are still doubtful about the newbie party. Needless to say, the BJP is still in a commanding position in Gujarat which happens to be the home state of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Amit Shah. Congress wants to be in direct fight with BJP like it did in 2018.