PAR­AL­LEL PITCH

India Today - - BATTLE FOR 2014 -

Ramdev’s Mis­sion Modi shadow cam­paign is on a roll

Ramdev will travel through 100 Lok Sabha con­stituen­cies be­fore poll day.

The yoga guru plans to visit sev­eral fam­i­lies a day dur­ing the course of his trav­els.

Teams of 500 fol­low­ers each in 600 districts will can­vas 500 fam­i­lies per worker, touch­ing base with 250,000 fam­i­lies in ev­ery district.

Teams will dis­trib­ute five mil­lion flags, badges, scarves each, be­sides other pro­pa­ganda ma­te­rial.

Around 1,000 mo­tor­cy­cles and 300 cars, be­sides those owned by Ramdev’s fol­low­ers, have been de­ployed for cam­paign teams.

Over 500 district head­quar­ter of­fices of the Patan­jali Yog Samiti have been beefed up with com­put­ers and colour print­ers.

The Baba’s pop­u­lar Yoga Shibirs will turn into cam­paign venues.

No cam­paign ex­penses will lead to BJP’s door. The Baba has suc­cess­fully tried this out in the re­cent As­sem­bly polls.

Since elec­tions were an­nounced, Ramdev doesn’t make di­rect ref­er­ences to Naren­dra Modi or his po­lit­i­cal op­po­nents. In­stead, they are all re­ferred to in easy-to-com­pre­hend metaphors, legally dis­so­ci­at­ing his ef­fort from BJP’s cam­paign for the eyes of the Elec­tion Com­mis­sion.

Ramdev’s sup­port­ers ex­pect their net­work to help BJP and its al­lies win eight to 10 seats in Odisha, five to six each in Andhra Pradesh and West Ben­gal, five to seven in As­sam and three each in Tamil Nadu and Ker­ala.

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