Despite Narmada dam politics, BJP may meet Waterloo in Gujarat

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Narmada: Prime Minister Narendra Modi overviews the construction work of Statue of Unity after inaugurating the Sardar Sarovar Dam at Kevadiya in Narmada district on Sunday. PTI Photo / PIB (PTI9_17_2017_000054B) *** Local Caption ***

Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, chose his birthday, September 17, to dedicate the Sardar Sarovar Dam  to the nation and made a powerful speech to show that the dam would go a long way to give a lot of benefits to the people of Gujarat. Fifty six years after the first Prime Minister Pandit Jawahal Lal laid the foundation, the dam was inaugurated now. The Prime Minister spoke of the hurdles the dam faced and indirectly condemned those behind   creating obstacles. As a matter  of fact Medha Patkar a noted  social activist  was behind the Narmada Bachao Andolan and it was based on solid ground as the dam  displaced tens of thousands of people and thousands acres  of fertile land was submerged.

Now the dam will be on poll agenda for the BJP in elections. The Congress has recovered the lost ground in the state and is expecting its victory. At present the dam is of little benefit to Gujarat farmers as the network of canals to irrigate the farm sector is only  20 per cent  complete. This will of course be revealed in poll campaign. The party chief Amit Shah will strain every nerve but it is an uphill task for him. While Hardik Patel demolished a major vote bank of the BJP, now Shankersinh Veghela has  jumped  into the  fray with  his own party to be launched soon. Thus it will be a triangular fight in the state.

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