LS election was a different ball game, BJP not to repeat performance

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Published on 21 Feb 2017 10:19 AM GMT

LS election was a different ball game, BJP not to repeat performance
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LS election was a different ball game, BJP not to repeat performance
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Lucknow: The state has gone halfway through the current elections which are slated to end next month and, at this stage, one thing is abundantly clear that the Bhartiya Janta Party will not repeat its performance made during the Lok Sabha polls held two years ago.

The party, breaking all its previous records in Uttar Pradesh, had bagged 42 per cent of the total votes polled and won more than 90 per cent of the total seats in the state, leaving all other parties high and dry.

In the current assembly elections, the feat will not be repeated, whatever the party president, Amit Shah or the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, who is trying harder in these polls, may claim.

It is not to suggest that Modi magic is over or that he is no more as popular. The problem is that in assembly elections regional factors and castes play a major role, at least in this state and the neighbouring state of Bihar. So, state leaders like Lalu Prasad Yadav and Mayawati find patient listeners in these elections and influence voters. They do not matter as much in the countrywide elections as national issues then top the voters' agenda.

However, if this party is making tall claims, so are doing its rivals, the Samajwadi Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party. But the latter may improve its tally from the previous assembly polls when it had captured only 80 seats. The factor favouring it this time is her Muslim appeasement policy which is a departure from the past.

Unlike the previous assembly elections, she has allotted more seats to the community than even Dalits who are her traditional supporters. However, she is unlikely to capture 300 seats as she has often claimed, despite this and other new moves she has made.

Going by the current mood of the electorate, the ruling Samajwadi Party's claim of winning more than 300 seats in the company of the Congress party also appears to be tall.The party may face internal sabotage and has to worry more about the party insiders. Its first task should be to keep the house in order and give no other reason for resentment in the ranks and file.

Not only about this party, in fact, no prediction should be made about the number of seats to be won by any of these players . In a tight triangular contest as in this state this year any prediction may go wrong. The victory margin goes down sharply in such a situation and all calculations based on old formulae go haywire.

The state has a total of 403 seats in the assembly out of which over 200 have gone to polls in the first three phases. Polling for the fourth phase will be held on Thursday and electioneering will end on Tuesday.

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