Anti-incumbency and defection may damage Congress in Uttarakhand
Lucknow: Anti-incumbency and defection from the ruling Congress may go against the interest of the party in Uttarakhand which goes to polls on Wednesday next. The hustle and bustle of election in the state ended on Monday evening.
The Bhartiya Janta Party which has faced the worst rebellion in the state can draw some comfort from these developments and poll surveys held recently which predicted a better result for the party.
The party had captured 34 out of 70 assembly seats in 2007 but in the next election it was voted out of power. The Congress formed the next government but with support from like-minded parties. Later, it faced defection leading to imposition of President's rule. The Congress had come back to power only following Supreme's Court's intervention and assembly floor test.
This year election will be held only on 69 seats due to death of a candidate. But nine party members who were elected in 2012 and who had deserted the party have been given ticket by the BJP. This mainly caused rebellion in the party . In many constituencies official party nominees are being opposed by the rebels.
Instead of working out a compromise formula the party decided to be tough with them and has expelled as many as 50 rebel party leaders.
While ten sitting Congress members have gone over to the BJP, only one sitting BJP member has switched over to the Congress.
The Bahujan Samaj Party, the third major player, is unlikely to pose a serious challenge to either of the two parties. In the previous election the party had bagged two seats. However, its performance was much better in 2007 as it had been victorious in eight constituencies
As far as the candidates are concerned, there are 60 sitting members in the fray who have doubled their assets from the previous election. Affidavits given to the Election Commission reveal that the average asset of these candidates is of Rs 3.62 crores as against 1.88 in the previous poll.
The richest man is Shailendra Mohan Singhal who has come to the BJP after resigning from the Congress. He has assets worth Rs 35 crores. Five years ago he had held properties worth Rs 3.19 crores only.