Falling BSP vote share may have helped BJP in UP

New Delhi: Even though the ruling BJP party lost 57 seats in Uttar Pradesh, their vote percentage was up 1.84% from the latest Assembly polls in 2017. The saffron party has crossed its tally of more than 250 in the state with 41.51 per hundred votes in 2022, up from 39.67% in 2017, according to ECI data through 10 p.m. Thursday.

That aside, the data indicates that there are around 50 Assembly constituencies, where the BJP won by a narrow margin, in many of them even less than 5,000 votes. But one of the most surprising is the fall of Mayawati’s Bahujan Samajwadi Party (BSP). The party is at its worst and at its lowest tally since 1991, winning just one seat.

In 2017, the party won only 19 seats, compared to 80 in 2012. Regarding the vote share, in 2017, the BSP obtained 22.23% of the votes and in 2022, the party only obtained than 12.81%, a 9.42% drop in voting share. Political experts estimate that 5% of votes from non-jatavs (Dhobi, Khatik, Pasis, Bhangi, Koris and Dhanuks) shifted to the ruling BJP as they fall under the ‘beneficiary category’ in the state. The SC community, which accounts for nearly 21% of the UP population – both ‘jatav’ and ‘non-jatav’ voters have traditionally been BSP-inclined since its inception. Jatav shares 11% of the vote and non-jatav 10%.

“MY” in UP politics has traditionally meant Muslim-Yadav Vote Bank. But the BJP has given it a whole new meaning, whether it’s the ‘Modi-Yogi’ combo or the ‘Mahila and youth-centric schemes’ – it’s all in favor of the party.

According to the data, more than 1.4 million tons of wheat, 0.95 million tons of rice, 0.10 million tons of chana (gram), 10.19 crore liters of soybean oil and 0.10 million tons of salt was the free ration distributed by Yogi Adityanath government in UP. between December 2021 and February 2022 as part of the Covid relief program just before the state elections.

This has also had an impact on women voters, who are considered the “silent voters”. The higher percentage of women voting added to the victory of this BJP rising above castes and social lines that sent it rations and ensured the improvement of law and order. In this election, the data showed that the proportion of female voters who went to the polls 70.42% was higher than that of men 68.78%. At the same time, the Samajwadi Party (SP) also announced in its manifesto that it would provide free rations for the next five years if elected to power.

On the other hand, in the 2014 general election, the BJP made a huge dent in the “no-jatav” vote by sweeping the state with 72 seats. It was the Pasis that left with the BJP in 2014 and in 2017 too. In fact, the BSP’s appeal to the Brahmin community does not seem to have had an impact on the elections this time around. This time, the BJP had given the ticket to former Uttarakhand Governor Baby Rany Maurya to compete from the reserved SC seat in Agra to start the jatav and non-jatav vote of the BSP. Maurya has emerged as the jatav face of the BJP, and it looks like the party gamble has worked this time around. While another non-jatav voting chunk that veered away from the BSP seems to have gone the way of the SP.

That aside, the Samajwadi Party power corridor has repeatedly claimed that the BJP and BSP are working together to garner more votes for the ruling party, especially in the last two rounds of elections, which span the entire eastern part of Uttar Pradesh.

On the other hand, contrary to speculation, the ruling BJP fared well in Western Uttar Pradesh where it expected anger from farmers and consolidation of Muslim votes against it. As previously reported, the Jat community was up in arms against the BJP due to agricultural unrest, non-payment of cane duties and they were joined by Muslims in most seats to ensure the defeat of the BJP candidates. However, the results proved the speculators wrong and the BJP not only managed to win the majority of the seats in this part but also pushed the SP-RLD into second place. In the western UP districts dominated by Jats and Dalits, the BJP’s strike rate has been the highest.

Experts believe that only Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s persistent electoral programs allowed the BJP to achieve victory in the UP. PM Modi has conducted a total of 29 election campaign programs of which 23 are physical rallies and 6 are virtual communication programs since January 18.

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