Election Results LIVE 2018 – Madhya Pradesh, Telangana, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, Mizoram

@ 5.45 p.m

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–Congress looks strong in Rajasthan, leading in 20 seats. With lead in 17 seats, TRS consolidates position in Telangana.

–30 minutes into counting, TRS ahead in early leads – Jogu Ramanna leads in Adilabad

 

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Close fight between the BJP and Congress in Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh. Congress takes big early lead in Rajasthan. TRS leads in Telangana.

 

The results for assembly elections to five states – Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Telangana, Mizoram and Chhattisgarh – will be declared tomorrow. The time of the start of vote counting is 8 am. Election trends will start coming out soon. The election results 2018 are important as it may impact 2019 general elections. All the major political parties would want to end the year on a winning note.

The Election Commission of India has made all the necessary arrangements for the poll results. In Telangana, the Chief Electoral Officer said necessary arrangements have been made for the counting day and the strongrooms, where voting machines are kept, are secured with central paramilitary forces providing. Here are the answers to some of the questions related to assembly election results.

Election result date: The election results 2018 will be announced on December 11.

Election results time: The counting will begin at 8 am. The results will be declared in the evening.

Where to watch election news coverage: Election Coverage starts when counting begins

The Telangana election results, the Madhya Pradesh election results, theRajasthan election results, the Chhattisgarh election results and Mizoram election results will announced tomorrow by the Election Commission.

Exit polls for five states in elections have predict a worrying outcome for the BJP in three heartland states, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan. An aggregate of exit polls shows the BJP’s winning streak is set to end in Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, both heading for hung verdict.

 

 

 

Disclaimer: RSS has been taken from their official website.

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Rajasthan Elections LIVE : Final Voter Turnout Of 74.21 Per Cent

10.30 a.m

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Voting for 200 seats in the Rajasthan assembly election will start at 8 am. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is facing a major challenge as the northern state has always voted out the incumbent government for more than two decades. Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje, however, is looking to hold on to power by riding on her government’s schemes and the work it has done for the people of Rajasthan. The Congress is counting on anti-incumbencyto win in Rajasthan. In the last round of by-elections in February, the Congress wrested the Ajmer and Alwar Lok Sabha seats and the Mandalgarh assembly seat from the BJP. The votes for Rajasthan will be counted on December 11 along with Mizoram, Madhya Pradesh, Telangana and Chhattisgarh.

Here are the live updates for Rajasthan assembly election:

Final Voter Turnout Of 74.21 Per Cent

59.43% voter turnout in Rajasthan till 3pm

District wise voter turnout till 3.00 pm

Ajmer: 56%
Alwar: 60%
Barmer: 59%
Bharatpur: 62%
Bikaner: 59%
Chittorgarh: 67%
Churu: 58%
Jhalawar: 62%
Tonk: 57%
Udaipur: 60%

41.37 per cent voter turnout in Rajasthan till 1pm

22.01 per cent voter turnout till 11am across Rajasthan

Voter turnout in Rajasthan till 9am is 6.11 per cent

Vasundhara Raje casts her vote, slams Sharad Yadav for body-shaming
“I am extremely shocked,” she said on Bihar politician Sharad Yadav’s comment on her weight that was seen as body-shaming. “It is very important that Election Commission takes notice of the remark. I feel insulted. Women are insulted,” Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje said after casting her vote at pink polling booth No. 31A at Jhalrapatan constituency in Jhalawar.
Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje of the BJP is scheduled to cast her vote at 8:15 am for the Rajasthan assembly election. She is counting on her government’s programmes to fetch her a large number of votes, enough to keep her in power for another term. The Congress is hoping anti-incumbency will work in the northern state.

Mock polling being conducted at booth No. 106 in Jodhpur’s Sardarpura constituency. Voting for the Rajasthan assembly election will start at 8 am.

Election official prepare to receive voters at a polling booth in Jodhpur. Voting for the Rajasthan assembly election will start at 8 am.

The counting of votes will take place on December 11. The results of three other states – Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Mizoram – will be announced on the same day.

 

No chief ministerial candidate in Congress
The Congress is yet to announce a chief ministerial candidate in Rajasthan. Its election in-charge Sachin Pilot and former chief minister Ashok Gehlot are seen as front-runners for the top job if the party wins.
Voting in the Rajasthan assembly election will start at 8 am. A “pink polling booth” in Jhalawar.

 

Prominent candidates in Rajasthan assembly election: Congress
Heavyweight candidates from Congress include State Chief Opposition Leader  and famous Jat leader Rameshwar Lal Dudi from Nokha, State Party Chief Sachin Pilot from Tonk, Former Chief Minister and State General Secretary of AICC Ashok Gehlot from Sardarpur, Senior Congress Leader and former Revenue Minister Hemaram Choudhary from Gudha Malani, State Vice President and former Cabinet Minister Mahendra Jeet Singh Malviya from Bagidora, Former State Home Minister Shanti Dhariwal from Kota and Son of Jaswant Singh and former MP Manvendra Singh from Jhalrapatan.
Prominent candidates in Rajasthan assembly election: BJP
From Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), State Rural Development Minister Rajendra Rathore from Churu, State Party President and Mayor of Jaipur Ashok Parnami from Adarsh Nagar, State Women and Child Welfare Minister Anita Bhadel from Ajmer South, State Home Minister Gulab Chand Kataria from Udaipur, and Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje from Jhalrapatan are the prominent candidates.

In the last five elections since 1993, Rajasthan has swung between the BJP and the Congress. But the Congress, which won only 21 assembly seats in 2013 against the BJP’s 161, would need an 8 per cent swing in its favour to win the election.

A “pink polling booth” at Jhalawar in Rajasthan. Voting for the Rajasthan assembly elections will start at 8 am.

 

The election for the 200-member Rajasthan Assembly, scheduled to be held on Friday, 7 December, is largely being seen as a bipolar contest between the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Congress.

The Assembly elections in five states are being termed a litmus test for the Narendra Modi-led NDA government ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.

Rajasthan Elections: All You Need to Know

Will Rajasthan see a break in the 25-year trend of alternating between the BJP and the Congress governments every consecutive term, as the state goes to polls on 7 December?

In Rajasthan, the BJP is fighting anti-incumbency to retain power though no party has been repeated after one term in the last 20 years. With the poll surveys predicting that Congress was ahead, the BJP has made persistent efforts over the last few days to shore up its prospects with Modi, the main vote getter for the BJP, addressing around 12 rallies.

Disclaimer: RSS has been taken from their official website.

Telangana Elections LIVE : As polling nears end in 119 constituencies, Telangana recorded a Final Voter Turnout Of 73.2 %

As polling nears end in 119 constituencies, Telangana recorded a Final Voter Turnout Of 73.2 %.

–After Jwala Gutta, IPS Officer’s Name Missing;

–Manish Sisodia Slams EC

56.17% Turnout Till 3 PM; Sania Mirza Casts Vote In Hyderabad

PV Sindhu after casting her vote In Hyderabad

48.1 per cent voter turnout till 1 PM in Telangana.

8.97% Voter Turnout Till 9 AM

As many as 1,821 candidates including a transgender are in the fray in the election.

For the first time, Election Commission is using Voters Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) in Telangana.

224 video-surveillance teams and 133 video-viewing teams have been pressed into service.

Polling will start at 7 am and end at 5 pm, while in 13 constituencies which were classified as Left Wing Extremist-affected, polling ends one hour before (4 pm).

The TRS, seeking a second term in office, is going alone, as also the BJP.

The Congress has stitched together “Prajakutami” (People’s Front) along with the Telugu Desam Party (TDP), the Telangana Jana Samiti (TJS) and the CPI to take on the ruling TRS, led by caretaker Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao (KCR).

The assembly polls in Telangana were originally scheduled to be held simultaneously with the Lok Sabha elections next year, but the House was dissolved on September 6 as per a recommendation by the state cabinet.

Security was beefed up at bordering areas which were identified as Left Wing Extremist-affected regions.

One lakh police personnel including 25,000 central paramilitary forces and 20,000 from other states are engaged in poll duties.

Campaigning by political parties came to an end at 5 pm Wednesday.

Over 2.80 crore electorate are eligible to exercise their franchise in the State, which has a total of 32,815 polling stations across.

More than 1.50 lakh polling officials including reserve staff are in the process of giving final touches Thursday to make the election to the 119-member House a smooth affair.

After a high-voltage campaign that saw war of words among contending parties, voting for the Assembly elections in Telangana will begin on Friday with the Congress-led alliance challenging the ruling TRS, and the BJP seeking to make it a triangular contest.

 

India’s youngest state, Telangana, goes to polls on Friday, 7 December, to constitute its second Legislative Assembly. The single-phase polling will see voting in all 119 constituencies.

The main contenders for this election remain to be the KCR-led TRS, which was in power for the last four years, and the Congress-led ‘Mahakutami’ (or ‘Grand Alliance’), which included the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) among many others.

  • Telangana is going to polls nearly seven months earlier as the TRS government dissolved the Assembly before its term ended
  • The Congress is considered the main Opposition in the state and is leading a grand alliance called ‘Mahakutami or Prajakutami’
  • TRS chief K Chandrashekar Rao will remain the caretaker chief minister till the new government is formed

What You Must Know About Telangana Polls 2018

What Do the Pre-poll Surveys Say?

The Aaj Tak-India Today survey predicts a massive victory for the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS), with 43 percent voters predicted to cast their ballot for the KCR party. The Congress, on the other hand, is expected to garner 18 percent of vote share.

Interestingly, 11 percent of those surveyed wanted KCR to be the next prime minister, while 44 percent voted for PM Narendra Modi and 39 percent for Congress President Rahul Gandhi.

Another survey conducted by VDP Associates, claims that the TRS is all set to win at least 80 seats, while the Congress is expected to win around 20 seats. The survey predicts that the BJP will win seven seats, with the AIMIM getting eight.

The Main Contenders in Battlefield Telangana

The main contenders for this election remain to be the KCR-led TRS, which was in power for the last four years, and the Congress-led ‘Mahakutami’ (or ‘Grand Alliance’), which included the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) among many others.

The BJP, although not a main contender, is expected to swing some percentage of vote share its way. In all, there are now as many as nine political parties vying for power in the state.

Early Polls in Telangana

A united Andhra Pradesh has voted for both state Assembly and the Lok Sabha at the same time — from 1999 till 2014. However, since August 2018, media reports suggested that KCR was getting ‘battle-ready’ to dissolve the Assembly and go to polls in winter 2018, along with Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Mizoram.

KCR dissolved the Telangana Assembly on 6 September, his supposed ‘lucky’ date.

Hours after dissolving the Assembly, he released a list of 105 candidates who will fight the elections from Husnabad, the very place he launched his 2014 campaign.

 

 

 

Disclaimer: RSS has been taken from their official website.

 

Nitin Gadkari confident of BJP forming govt in Chhattisgarh, MP & Rajasthan

Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari on Wednesday exude 100 percent confidence that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) will form its government in the current elections in Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan. While talking about what the BJP government has done and it is doing for the development of Rajasthan, Nitin Gadkari said, “I have toured Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan and I am very confident that the BJP will form the Government again in all three states with majority.”

MP, Mizoram Polls 2018 LIVE updates: 75% polling in Mizoram, 74.6% in MP

In Mizoram, Congress will fight tooth and nail to save its last bastion in the North-East from falling. In the Christian dominated state, BJP’s pro-Hindutva image has done it any service and any party that is seen canoodling with the saffron party. Incumbent Chief Minister Lal Thanhawla’s tenure ends on December 15. Congress, the Mizo National Front (MNF), the Zoram People’s Movement (ZPM), and the Bharatiya Janata Party are the main political parties in the battle for Mizoram.

Madhya Pradesh, Mizoram Assembly Elections – LIVE updates

11:50 am: Voter turnout in Mizoram is at 29 percent till 11 am, as per ANI. In 2013 State Assembly Elections, the north-eastern state saw 89 percent voter turnout. Meanwhile in MP, 13.63% voter turnout was recorded till 11.15 am.

11:10 am: Special arrangements have been made to facilitate voting by members of the Bru community. Food and transport facilities are also being provided to those coming to cast votes. Violence between Mizo and Bru tribes broke out in 1997, following which many Bru families were forced to flee their home state and take shelter in the neighbouring Tripura.

10:44 am: After a person was arrested after BJP polling agents were found carrying campaign material within 200 meters of a polling booth in MP, another case of violation of section 126 of the Representation of People Act, 1951. The Election Commision is expected to look into the matter.

10: 30 am:  After initial reports of multiple Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) and Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) not working, over 100 EVMs have been replaced, chief electoral officer V Kantha Rao was quoted by reports as saying.

 

10:19 am: Earlier, Kamal Nath after casting his vote in Chhindwara said, “I have full faith in the people of Madhya Pradesh, they are simple and innocent people who have been robbed for a long time by BJP”.

In true democratic spirit, a 101-year-old woman was spotted outside the polling booth in Agar Malwa in MP after exercising her franchise:

10:02 am: In violation of election code of conduct, a person was apprehended after BJP’s polling agents were caught with campaign material within 200 meters of a polling booth in MP.

9:50 am: Mizoram has witnessed 15 percent voting till 9 am, as per ANI. The voting in the North-eastern state started at 7 am and will continue till 4 pm. Mizoram’s borders with neighbouring Tripura, Assam and Manipur as well as international borders with Myanmar and Bangladesh have been sealed since Sunday for elections.

9:37 am: After claiming yesterday that there is pro-incumbency and not anti-incumbency in the state, CM Shivraj Chouhan after casting his vote in Budhni on Wednesday said he is confident that BJP will form the government with absolute majority.  “We’re 100% certain that BJP will form the government with an absolute majority. We have set a target of 200 seats and our lakhs of volunteers are working to make it a reality,” he told ANI.

9:22 am: There have been reports of EVMs not working in some of the booths in MP. Two faulty EVMs in Ujjain have been replaced, 11 VVPAT machines in Alirajpur, 5 VVPAT and 2 EVMs in Burhanpur also replaced. It was earlier reported that EVM at polling booth number 178 in Dabra, Gwalior district is not working.

9:03 am: In MP, a total of 5,04,95,251 voters will cast their votes to decide the fate of 2,907 candidates. Voting in three Maoist-affected seats Lanji, Paraswada and Baihar began at 7 am and will continue till 3 pm while the polling in the remaining 227 seats began at 8 am and will continue till 5 pm.

8:48 am: Congress leader Kamal Nath cast his vote in Chhindwara while MP minister and BJP leader Yashodhara Raje Scindia cast her vote at a polling station in Shivpuri. She is up against Congress’ Siddharth Lada.

8:34 am: Mizoram has 7,70,395 registered electors who will vote in 1,164 polling booths across the state. Nearly 209 candidates are in the fray. Here are some visuals of voters as they exercise their franchise:

View image on TwitterView image on Twitter

 

8:22 am:  Both BJP and Congress leaders made temple runs as polling began in MP. MP CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan offered prayers on banks of Narmada river in Budhni with his wife Sadhna Singh. Meanwhile, Congress leader Kamal Nath made his obeisance at Hanuman temple in Chhindwara.

8:13 am: Polling in Maoist-affected constituencies began early in Madhya Pradesh while voting in the rest of the state started at 8 am. The most-watched seat today is CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan’s Budhni. He is pitted against Congress’ Arun Yadav there.

8:03 am: In Mizoram, all booths will be connected wirelessly leaving no “shadow areas”. The state has a hilly terrain which makes access to certain locations difficult. Mizoram Deputy Inspector General of Police earlier Joseph Lalchhuana earlier told PTI the move will help in timely reporting of the progress in polls.

7:45 am:  On the eve of MP polls, Shivraj Singh Chouhan who is the longest-serving chief minister of the state told PTI that pro-incumbency and not anti-incumbency is at play in the state. “What is at work here is pro-incumbency and not anti-incumbency,” said the 59-year-old BJP leader, whose party has been in power in the state since 2003,” he told PTI.

7:30 am: Voting in MP will begin at 8 am. About 500 ‘pink’ polling booths all across MP which will completely be managed by all-woman staff. From presiding officers till security guards, these booths will have all women staff.

MP polls: Rajnath Singh takes dig at Congress manifesto; says party ‘holding on to cow’s tail’ for survival in state

Union home minister Rajnath Singh said on Sunday that the Congress in Madhya Pradesh has now latched onto the cow for its survival.

The Congress, in its manifesto for the 28 November Assembly elections, has promised to build cow shelters across the state.

“Congress leaders are now doing temple-hopping as they know that the party cannot achieve anything on its own. They are kneeling before God and holding onto cow’s feet,” Singh said, addressing campaign rallies in Sagar, Morena and Gwalior region. They are holding on to the cow’s tail and promising to build shelter homes for cows,” he said.

“For us (the ruling BJP) cow is not an election issue. Temple and cow are crucial parts of our culture,” he added.

Saying that chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan is the first choice of people, the senior BJP leader alleged that the “Congress does not like him as he is born in a simple family.”

The opposition party is yet to choose its chief ministerial candidate while the BJP has renominated Chouhan, Singh said.

When he campaigned in the state during 2003 elections, “there was darkness under the regime of then chief minister Digvijay Singh, now there is brightness (electricity) in each household,” he said.

Under the Congress rule from 1993-2003, agricultural grown rate of the state was three percent, which has now soared to 20 percent, while the per capita income has risen to Rs 80,000 from Rs 15,000, the Union minister said.

 

 

 

Disclaimer: RSS has been taken from their official website.

Madhya Pradesh Assembly election results will tell us more about 2019 than all other four states, here’s why

Madhya Pradesh has emerged as the most coveted prize to bag among the three north Indian states due to elect their new Assemblies this year. This is because Madhya Pradesh mirrors the big Indian story of agrarian distress, economic disruptions caused by demonetisation and the Goods and Services Tax, and social conflict. Should the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) still win the state for the fourth time in a row, the Congress will seem a ship doomed to sink in the whirlpool of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. Conversely, a Congress victory will have the party set sail its flotilla for capturing power in Delhi.

Among the three north Indian states, Chhattisgarh’s national significance is limited as it sends only 11 MPs to the Lok Sabha. By contrast, Madhya Pradesh has 29 Lok Sabha seats, just three more than Rajasthan’s 26. Yet Rajasthan has been relegated in importance because a Congress triumph here will be par for the course. Ever since the BJP formed the government in Rajasthan in 1993, the power there has alternated between it and the Congress every five years. A Congress victory, therefore, cannot be taken as a reflection of the political mood in north India.

By contrast, the BJP won 165 out 230 Assembly seats in Madhya Pradesh in 2013, 143 in 2008, and 173 in 2003. More significantly, it polled 44.87 percent of votes in 2013, 37.64 percent in 2008, and 42.50 percent in 2003. In fact, in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, the BJP’s vote share ballooned to a stunning 54.03 percent, a rarity in India.

“In the aftermath of the fall of the Congress nationally, there are not many states where the dominance of one single party has been shaping so clearly. In Madhya Pradesh, the Congress is not only kept out of power, but the BJP has also established its domination beyond electoral politics,” wrote Yatindra Singh Sisodia in Electoral Politics in Madhya Pradesh: Explaining the BJP consolidation, a paper he authored in 2014.

Based on the post-poll survey he conducted for the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies, Delhi, Sisodia, quite significantly, added, “It (BJP) has also been able to spread its support base across social sections… While the leadership (Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan) factor that contributed to the electoral success may have limitations in the long run, the fact that the BJP has wider social base and that it is seen as a party that may perform better than its rivals, will surely remain more dependable factors in this consolidation.”Shivraj Singh Chouhan and Narendra Modi. AFP file image

Not only has the Congress been kept out of power in Madhya Pradesh for 15 years, it lags far behind the BJP. For instance, it polled 36.38 percent of votes in the 2013 Assembly elections, nearly nine percent less than the BJP. Yet the hopes of the Congress have risen because of the social and economic tumult in the state, making it believe that the moment is propitious to overcome the massive lead the BJP has over it. Only a Congress win or photo finish in Madhya Pradesh will provide proof whether anti-incumbency, of even indeterminate magnitude, has set in against Modi and the BJP.

Yet the task of beating the BJP in Madhya Pradesh is formidable. For instance, agrarian distress in the state has been grabbing headlines, mostly notably when five farmers died in police firing last year. Traditionally, the BJP is considered an urban-centric party. Yet, in 2013, out of 194 constituencies in the state where urban population is less than 50 percent, the BJP won as many as 132, against the 55 that the Congress won. These comparative figures show the BJP has roots deep enough in rural Madhya Pradesh to limit the outfall of the discontent among farmers.

The challenge before the Congress to eat into the BJP’s rural base can also be perceived from the perspective of caste. The largest segment of agriculturists in the state belongs to the Other Backward Classes (OBCs), which account for around 42 percent of the electorate. Chouhan is a Dhakad, an OBC community engaged in agriculture and constituting about 3 to 4 percent of the state’s electorate.

The BJP’s OBC base is formidable – 67 percent of Yadavs voted for it in 2013 as against 25 percent of them for the Congress. The chasm between the two parties was less when it came to the support of non-Yadav OBCs – 45 percent of them voted for the BJP and 35 percent for the Congress. Given that the Dhakads are not numerically preponderant, it can be argued that Chouhan’s OBC identity will not stem the BJP’s slide because of agrarian distress.

However, Chouhan has refrained from harping on his OBC identity, choosing instead to project himself as the “son of a farmer.” He has repeatedly projected the Congress as the party of “raja (Digvijay Singh), maharaja (Jyotiradita Scindia) and udyogpati (industrialist).” In this context, it will be interesting to see whether agrarian distress will drive farmers to desert one of their own fighting to save his chief ministerial chair.

Should the BJP’s support among OBC farmers crack in a state that is its stronghold, it will be to the benefit of Opposition parties anchored among middle castes. In north India, the gains will not accrue to the Congress, whose upper caste leadership structure has always shied away from courting the OBCs on the basis of their caste identity.

As such, in Madhya Pradesh, both the upper castes and OBCs have been railing against the BJP for reversing the Supreme Court judgment that was seen to have diluted the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.

In 2013, the BJP won 28 out of 35 seats reserved for SCs and 31 out of 47 seats reserved for STs. The anger among the upper castes and OBCs could, quite surprisingly, adversely impact the BJP in the SC reserved seats. This is because in 30 out of 35 such seats, the OBCs and the upper castes together account for as much as 60-65 percent of votes. Should they decide to not support the BJP, its 2013 tally of 28 seats would likely dip.

Comprising less than 16 percent of the electorate, the upper castes have been die-hard supporters of the BJP in Madhya Pradesh – 57 percent of Brahmins, 60 percent of Rajputs and 43 percent of other upper castes voted for the BJP in 2013. In comparison, only 22 percent of Brahmins, 25 percent of Rajputs and 25 percent of other upper castes did for the Congress.

Is the disaffection of the upper castes against the BJP strong enough to propel them in decisive numbers to the Congress? The answer to this question will determine whether the Congress will continue to play the soft Hindu card, such as indulging in its own brand of politics over the cow and projecting its leader Rahul Gandhi as the janeu-dhari Brahmin. Madhya Pradesh could very well have the Congress redefining its self – and becoming a pole to which the upper castes, particularly Brahmins, could decide to flock.

In hindsight, one reason why the Congress did not stitch an alliance with the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) was perhaps because it feared such a decision would alienate the upper castes and OBCs-farmers. In 2013, 36 percent of SCs voted for the BJP in 2013, 33 percent for the Congress and 22 percent for the BSP. What the Congress could have gained from aligning with the BSP, it hopes to more than make up with the votes of the upper castes and farmers.

Yet it might become a problem for the Congress if the BSP’s vote-share among Dalits increases exponentially and the upper castes and OBCs don’t desert the BJP in significant numbers. In 2013, out of 57 constituencies having SC population of 20 percent and above, the Congress won just eight seats and the BJP a whopping 46. Then again, out of 80 seats in which STs constituted 20 percent or more of the population, the BJP won 49 seats and the Congress 29.

Much has been written on Madhya Pradesh’s economic woes arising from demonetisation and the Goods and Services Tax. In 2013, the BJP polled 42 percent of votes of the upper income group, 46 percent of the middle income group, 45 percent of the lower income group, and 44 percent of the poor. By contrast, the Congress polled 27 of votes of the upper income group, 34 percent of the middle income group, 38 percent of the lower income group, and 44 percent of the poor.

In other words, the BJP was voted by as many poor as was the Congress, traditionally the principal recipient of their votes. Let alone the poor, in case the BJP loses substantial ground among the middle and lower income groups, the Congress would cite this as proof of the backlash against the Modi government’s economic policies. It could arm the Congress to mount an attack on the BJP before the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.

Creating credible narratives in electoral politics is undoubtedly important. But Madhya Pradesh’s significance goes far beyond that – it will tell us whether the BJP has the skills to resolve the animosities its own social policies have triggered among its large support base; and whether it can pacify those who have been cut by its economic policies. On the other hand, the fall of the BJP’s impregnable fortress of Madhya Pradesh will recast Congress’ personality into a mould that will have an upper caste polish to it, apart from encouraging its leaders into believing that anti-incumbency has started to work against the BJP and that they have hit upon the right strategy to take advantage of it.

 

 

 

Disclaimer: RSS has been taken from their official website.