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Business News/ Politics / News/  'BJP was better than Congress but...': Shashi Tharoor predicts ruling party's 'downward slide' in 2024 Lok Sabha polls
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'BJP was better than Congress but...': Shashi Tharoor predicts ruling party's 'downward slide' in 2024 Lok Sabha polls

Lok Sabha Elections 2024: Shashi Tharoor also urged people to not “give up on the Opposition as it could be your next government”.

Congress MP Shashi Tharoor at the Parliament House complex during the Budget session, in New Delhi, Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2024. (PTI)Premium
Congress MP Shashi Tharoor at the Parliament House complex during the Budget session, in New Delhi, Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2024. (PTI)

Ahead the Lok Sabha Elections 2024, Congress leader Shashi Tharoor explained where the Congress falls behind the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Speaking at ABP Network's Ideas of India' Summit 3.0, he said on Friday the BJP has been better than the Congress "at the last mile of reaching every voter and knocking on doors, their panna prabhari system, etc."

He said politics is about ideas, policies, and issues on one hand, and delivering them to the electorate in a way that gets out the results. "I agree that in the last couple of elections, the BJP has been better than Congress at the last mile of reaching every voter and knocking on doors, their panna prabhari system, etc. They have also been far better funded," he added.

Tharoor also urged people to not "give up on the Opposition as it could be your next government".

Speaking about the BJP, Tharoor said it would be difficult for the BJP to repeat its electoral performance of 2019. He said the BJP's performance peaked in 2019, in many states, and there would be only a "downward slide" in the coming elections.

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"The 'complacency' of the BJP is the opposition's strength," Shashi Tharoor was quoted by PTI as saying while speaking on 'Collaborative Federalism: View of the States'.

Meanwhile, BJP MP Vinay Sahasrabuddhe, who was part of the panel, said the target for his party in the coming Lok Sabha polls was 370 seats.

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Tharoor responded by saying, ""They seem to think it is already a done deal and it isn't." He added that there was a great deal of scepticism about whether the BJP would be able to come anywhere close to what it was projecting.

Tharoor further explained why he has doubts about the BJP achieving the 300+ target and said that in the 2019 elections, the BJP did "too well" across the Hindi heartland where it is strong.

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He said after the "wave of enthusiasm after the Ram mandir and so", the BJP's "percentage of votes may go up but there are no seats left to win at any of these places, and the story will vary from state to state".

He noted that the BJP won every seat in Haryana, Rajasthan, all but one seat in Madhya Pradesh and Karnataka, and a large number of seats in West Bengal, Maharashtra and Bihar, Tharoor said.

ALSO READ: Why Congress is struggling to maintain relevance as 2024 Lok Sabha polls approach?

"The percentage of the BJP's votes may rise, but even if there is enthusiasm after the Ram Mandir consecration in Ayodhya, there are no more seats left to win in any of these places, and the story will vary from state to state," he said.

"All of them is not possible this time, because it's impossible for them to repeat those numbers. I think they peaked in 2019. We are going to see nothing but a downward slide. How much downhill that is going to be depends on how effective the opposition campaign is, which is just picking up," the Congress leader said.

The BJP's tally in the Lok Sabha rose to 303 in 2019. "All of this is not going to happen this time because it is impossible for them to repeat those numbers," Tharoor claimed.

"The election hasn't been called yet so we don't know how much time the Opposition has... Don't give up on the Opposition as it could be your next government," Tharoor said.

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Published: 24 Feb 2024, 04:06 PM IST
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