'BJP is Narendra Modi, Narendra Modi is BJP'

The exit poll results for the first phase of the Gujarat elections are very much along expected lines, indicating that the BJP under the guidance of Narendra Modi is set to rout the Congress and the Gujarat Parivartan Parishad (GPP) to garner at least 41 percent of the seats. (For more on the exit poll results, click here).

But behind this initial jubilation of the BJP camp on this imminent victory, there lies a very potent danger that political psephologists say could be dangerous for the BJP in the long run.

Narendra Modi remains the clear leader of Gujarat as shown in the exit polls of the first phase of the Gujarat elections. AP

The problem lies here:

Modi has come to symbolise the BJP in the state of Gujarat, a fact accepted by the BJP, as shown by Harin Pathak saying, "BJP is Narendra Modi, Narendra Modi is BJP". But his dominance is such, that he is possibly bigger than the party too.

Psephologist Yogendra Yadav feels that this dominance is not good for the BJP in the long run. But the nature of the dominance has also changed over the years, he added.

He said, "In the first ten years, it was all about Hindutva and organisation. In the last ten years it has become about an individual personality cult."

But has Modi become bigger than the BJP?

Yadav certainly thinks so. He said, "He has created a party within a party. He has snapped the relationship with the Sangh Parivar and the RSS."

And yet, the BJP can never think of dumping him from the party. He said, "This election has become a personality oriented election. There is no other way to explain his dominance."