Delhi Playing Pakistan, China Bashing Card Ahead of Indian General Elections

India’s ruling party is trying to raise every possible Pakistan, China issue to win the upcoming Indian general elections. Apart from China, Pakistan bashing has been dominating every election in India, says the article published in the Chinese Global Times.

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The Present BJP government is trying hard to make an election issue of Rahul Gandhi’s religious trip to Kailash Mansarovar where he reportedly met with some Chinese ministers and officials. Gandhi had cited his recent meeting with some Chinese leaders at a rally in the eastern Indian state of Odisha saying,” India should learn from the experience of China in creating jobs for youths”. “He cited China as an example to emulate for fighting unemployment but the ruling BJP has added a new twist to his remark”, said the article published in the Chinese Global Times.

The article presented the government survey reported by an Indian business daily revealing that India’s unemployment rate stood at 6.1% in 2017-18 which was the highest in the past 45 years. Gandhi quickly turned to Twitter to hit out at the BJP dispensation, describing it as “National Disaster” but the ruling party termed it “fake news.”

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According to the article in the Chinese Global Times, the BJP has projected Gandhi as a “Chinese propagandist.” “He keeps raving about China,” BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra was quoted as saying in The Times of India. The BJP has also questioned the “request” of the Chinese ambassador to give a ceremonial send-off to Gandhi for his Mansarovar trip.

“When Rahul Gandhi went for Kailash Mansarovar Yatra, a letter was sent by the Chinese ambassador to the MEA (Ministry of External Affairs) that he wanted to give Rahul Gandhi a ceremonial send-off. This protocol is limited to heads of state or government and leader of the opposition. Now it is clear why China wanted to extend this protocol to Rahul Gandhi. Yatra was just an excuse, he had to meet Chinese ministers and discuss something. The cat is out of the bag today, and the Congress needs to clarify,” said the article quoting BJP’s spokesperson Patra interview with the Hindustan Times.

The article published in the Chinese Global Times emphasised saying, “The BJP is desperate to raise any issue which could work in its favour in the elections with the mood of the general masses not looking positive towards the party. It wants to eliminate the anti-incumbency factor and divert the attention of the masses from more pressing issues. The main opposition has alleged the BJP failed to keep its promise of generating 20 million jobs in a year. The opposition is also repeatedly raising the Rafale fighter jet deal to counter Modi’s take on corruption. Now the BJP strategists feel playing the China card, to a certain extent, could help the ruling party in this matter.”

Citing the experts, the Chinese Global Times article says that such issues are not going to impact the elections. Ajay Jha, a prominent Delhi-based journalist who is an expert in Chinese affairs said: “China card will prove to be of little or just no help for the BJP. As such, China is not a threat to internal peace and security through a lingering border dispute has made people sceptical of China.”

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Pakistan, however, has been dominating every election. Pakistan also dominated the last general elections in 2014. The article cites a top BJP leader Giriraj Singh said,” those opposing Modi should go to Pakistan”.

“But why is the BJP desperate to play the China card this time? As per reports, the BJP has become apprehensive of not putting up a good show in the elections. Modi dropped enough hints about it when he urged people to elect a stable government so it could take “tough and strong decisions”. Various poll surveys too are making similar predictions”, says the Chinese Global Times.

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