NEW DELHI: BJP President Amit Shah rushed back to Delhi from Kerala, unable to make the history he had promised with his Jan Raksha Yatra. The much publicised event that had the BJP promising a turn of the tide with Shah’s yatra through Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s home town Pinarayi that was also the birthplace of the communist movement in the state, turned out to be a damp squib. As Shah left for Delhi within the first day of his three day yatra.

UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath took over, but his presence alienated even BJP supporters in Kerala to the point that expected crowds failed to turn up for his meetings. The reasons given by Kerala-ites are three:

The CPI(M) issued instructions to its cadres to allow the BJP yatra to pass off without protest. The result was a peaceful yatra, with the BJP unable to cash in on its “violent communists” propaganda;

Adityanath himself proved to be a blessing for the CPI(M) as he entered Kerala with a “UP is better than Kerala” comparison that alienated even those who might have supported the BJP during this yatra;

The Left and progressive takeover of the social media with political satire, memes, videos, songs, music all directed against the BJP. The creativity of the younger generation was in full display before and during the yatra, with videos showing the state of hospitals in UP, and the comparison with the excellent medicare available in Kerala. The BJP trolls, trained to threaten and abuse, were unable to deal with the humour, that was sharp and targeted both Shah and Adityanath.This was in wide circulation with the BJP losing the social media war entirely.

A meme depicted Shah telephoning PM Modi to tell him how delicious Kerala beef dishes are. There were any number on the BJP supporters being brought in from UP with no Kerala-ites there to receive the leaders. #KnaappanYogi trended over the social media, referring to the UP CM as pompous and arrogant. The social media spread the message of Hindi land arrogance across the state, with the BJP leaders in saffron becoming the butt of satire and sharp, focused humour.

Shah returned to Delhi to lead BJP demonstrations to the CPI(M) headquarters to retrieve some of the lost ground. CPI(M) leader MB Rajesh told The Citizen that the Adityanath and Shah visit has “actually benefited the Left” with the dismal comparisons, and Adityanath’s complete failure to click with the people of Kerala. His entire approach, he said, reflected a complete lack of understanding of Kerala’s aspirations and achievements.

It has been a double whammy of sorts for the BJP with its leaders being literally chased out---and without humour this time---from Darjeeling.

Ghosh was addressing a meeting during a two day visit to Darjeeling but was interrupted by angry locals. He and the few party workers with him were chased, pushed, and beaten. The BJP later accused rebel Gorkha Janmukti Morcha leader Binoy Tamang for the attack, and that the police did not provide any protection. However, no local was seen protecting the group either with Ghosh having to take refuge at the Darjeeling police station. The locals wanted the BJP to clarify its stand on Gorkhaland that the party has been hesitating to do.