CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury briefing the media after Polit Bureau meeting. Photo/ANI
CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury briefing the media after Polit Bureau meeting. Photo/ANI

Left attributes LS poll results to "successful shifting of narrative" by BJP

ANI | Updated: May 27, 2019 21:40 IST

New Delhi [India], May 27 (ANI): Sitaram Yechury, the general secretary of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) on Monday attributed the party's disastrous performance and Narendra Modi led NDA's resounding victory in the Lok Sabha polls to "successful shifting of narrative by the BJP from the "issues of day-to-day concern of people to communal nationalist jingoism".
Briefing the media after a meeting of the Polit Bureau here, Yechury said, "The BJP according to us could very purposefully shift the popular narrative away from the day to day problems people faced during the last five years of its rule and the hardships imposed due to demonetization, GST, price-rise, farm-crisis."
"All these issues could be pushed into the background. What they projected was a narrative built around communal-nationalistic jingoism and the fight against terrorism post-Pulwama," added Yechury.
The Left leader claimed that this was aided through the build-up of the persona of Narendra Modi and "micro-level" social engineering.
"This happened through the build-up of the persona of Narendra Modi and this was done through a host of methods. One was the effective use of technology and its instruments of messaging backed by big data analytics where the individual preference of people were all identified and the messaging was made appropriate to it and by very micro-level social engineering," Yechury said.
He conceded that NDA could "break" the formidable alliance of Samajwadi Party and Bahujan Samaj Party through such micro-level social engineering.
"After the UP Assembly polls, the non-Yadav OBCs, and non-Jatav Dalits were specifically targeted. By mobilizing that, they (BJP) could also break the formidable alliance of SP-BSP," he said.
Claiming that this was possible only because of the massive use of "money power", Yechuri said, "This was all possible because of the massive use of money power. We have not witnessed an election like the 2019 general election where money-power played a very-very big role."
Asserting that his party will do a thorough self-introspection, he said, "We will do a thorough self-introspection, Polit Bureau believes it so that this election can help us in strengthening the independent base of the party and our capacity for political intervention through the unleashing of popular struggles."
"The struggles not reflecting in votings have happened due to various factors that I discussed about how they successfully managed to change the narrative. Our objective will be to identify shortcomings and draw proper lessons to rectify the situation that is there before the country and on that basis, to further strengthen the left and its popular political intervention capabilities. That is an exercise we will undertake in the committee," he added.
The party's Polit Bureau also released a statement alleging that "sections of media" backed by massive money power helped in the build-up of Modi (Narendra Modi) persona.
The statement admitted that "Left" has received severe setbacks in these elections, particularly in its "strongholds".
"The electoral base of the CPI(M) saw a big erosion in our strongholds. The Polit Bureau discussed some of the issues that led to this erosion," the statement said adding that the Central Committee meeting from June 7 to June 9 will discuss and adopt a report, based on reports from the states, to "draw proper lessons" on the basis of a serious introspection on the experiences of these elections.
The party also expressed concern over "large scale reports" of CPI(M) supporters being physically prevented from voting.
"Most of our representations to implement the Election Commission's assurances to conduct a `free and fair' poll went unattended. During the course of the elections, 2 Left supporters have lost their lives in West Bengal and 1 in Tripura. In both states, post-poll violence continues. This is taking a dangerous turn towards communal clashes," the statement read.
The statement alleged that soon after the declaration of results, reports of attacks on minorities in Haryana, Madhya Pradesh have emerged which run contrary to the "PM-elect" Narendra Modi's declaration that the new government will be inclusive.
It called upon all sections of the society to strengthen the cherished harmony of the country's social fabric and to unitedly rise to meet the "challenges ahead". (ANI)