On Wednesday, Maharashtra unit of Samajwadi Party (SP) nominated Pradeep Dixit as its vice-president. While Dixit is unknown in political circles, he carries the lucrative MBA degree, and has worked as CEO in the media sector, including a brief stint with the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha and the Congress.
"His areas of achievement are in the field of strategic operational planning and progress reporting, media relations, perception building, developmental programmes, political co-ordination, election related strategies with special attention on electoral profile and booth management," reads the press release of the party which was surprisingly in English, a first, an indication of the begining of change.
Republican Party of India (A) has also taken on board Nitin Tayade as president of strategy. The erstwhile vice-president of HDFC bank as its chief strategist nine months back, Tayade is now ready with nine different cells dedicated to assembly polls. The RPI (A) also bagged ex-top cop PK Jain who is trying his best to enthuse some energy into party cadres.
Both the above mentioned parties have a limited base in the state and lack money and muscle power which reflected badly in the Lok Sabha elections. They lack aggressive leaders and professional approach and needed a makeover since long. Dixit and Tayade have been brought in to do so.
While RPI (A) seeks to contest 13 seats in Maharashtra assembly polls slated for October this year, Samajwadi Party may fight 75 seats. RPI (A) lacks the base and has no representation in Maharashtra assembly. On the other hand, Samajwadi party does have three MLAs in the outgoing assembly. The contest this time could be tougher for both unless they can bring forth a fresh outlook which can attract the youth.
The SP has relied on Muslim votebank and RPI (A) claims to represent the Dalits. They now attempt to reach out to all sections of society with renewed approach to widen their base. The fresh approach seems to be prompted by the results of Lok Sabha elections which had indicated a shuffle in the Muslim and Dalit constituencies not only in Maharashtra but across India.
Analysts however feel that these steps would help little. "The Aam Admi Party also has a team of aggressive, professional and high-tech people but they failed to make their presence due to lack of ground support. Elections are fought on ground where you need leaders and support of the people. RPI and SP both lag behind in these aspects."