In its campaign for the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) had promised 'achhe din', or better days. But its 2019 Lok Sabha, already in the works, is expected to shift the goalpost to the building of a 'New India'.
The campaign would focus on the efforts made during Narendra Modi government's tenure in meeting Sangh Parivar's core ideological agenda- construction of a Ram temple in Ayodhya, implementation of a uniform civil code and repeal of Article 370, or related provisions like Article 35A, that grant Jammu and Kashmir special status.
This 'new India' campaign, that the PM spoke about in his independence day speech on August 15, is set to be spelt out in greater detail at the BJP's forthcoming national executive meeting next month.
According to party sources, this vision of a 'new India' would talk about constructing a nation where the so called appeasement of religious minorities would stop, Hinduism would be accorded "due status" and there will be one law for all citizens, including for the people of Jammu and Kashmir.
The BJP leadership has been quick to claim credit for Tuesday's Supreme Court verdict that quashed instant 'triple talaq' as unconstitutional. It has said the judgement vindicates BJP's consistent stand on the issue.
The BJP plans to disseminate the message that the apex court order is one of the first steps in achieving its longstanding demand for a uniform civil code. Last year, the Law Commission had initiated the process to seek views of all the states and other stakeholders on the issue of the uniform civil code. This process is likely to gather pace in the run up to the Lok Sabha polls.
But the BJP would also stress how it would abide by the decisions of the judiciary on contentious issues, including on constructing a Ram Temple in Ayodhya. The case is currently in the Supreme Court and daily hearings are likely in the weeks to come.
The BJP has also launched a campaign for the repeal of Article 35A of the Constitution, which empowers the Jammu and Kashmir government to define "permanent residents" of the state. From 1951 onwards, the Bharatiya Jana Sangh, the previous avatar of the BJP, had campaigned for 'ek desh mein do pradhan, do vidhan, do nishan, nahin chalenge' (a single country cannot have two prime ministers, two constitutions and two national emblems).
According to party leaders privy to the BJP strategy, the Modi-Shah leadership is determined not to repeat the mistakes of Atal Bihari Vajpayee-led National Democratic Alliance 1 government. The top leadership is of the view that Vajpayee government's 'India Shining' campaign of 2004 backfired because it upset the core Hindutva support base of the party, which contributed to its defeat.
The BJP, however, has also not ignored the potential of the 'Mandal' politics- a glimpse of which could be seen during the 2014 Lok Sabha elections when the idea of Modi hailing from a backward caste had helped the BJP. Today's cabinet decision to set up a committee to examine the possibility of sub-quotas for the most marginalised communities within the OBCs (Other Backward Classes) is aimed at consolidating its new found non-Yadav OBC support base in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.