Congress Rises as BJP Loses Seats and Vote Share

Congress Rises as BJP Loses Seats and Vote Share

CHANDIGARH: The “Modi wave” that propelled the BJP to a sweeping victory in all 10 of Haryana’s seats with remarkable margins in 2019 failed to resonate with voters this time around. The ruling party managed to retain only five seats, and even those with significantly reduced margins. Meanwhile, the Congress made a strong comeback, gaining five seats. The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), contesting solely in Kurukshetra, was narrowly defeated.

The results suggest that issues such as farmers’ concerns, unemployment, the Agnipath scheme, and the old pension scheme (OPS) influenced voters this time. Additionally, there was significant anti-incumbency sentiment against the state BJP government, particularly targeting former CM Manohar Lal Khattar.

Comparison Study (Credits: TOI)

 

Congress Rises as BJP Loses Seats and Vote Share, BJP’s Underperformance in Haryana Raises Concerns Ahead of State Assembly Polls

In Karnal, Khattar secured a victory with a margin exceeding 2.3 lakh votes, whereas in 2019, BJP MP Sanjay Bhatia won the seat with a margin of over 6.56 lakh votes.

Despite the party replacing Khattar with Kurukshetra MP Nayab Singh Saini just before the Lok Sabha elections to counteract the strong anti-incumbency sentiment, Khattar led the party in the parliamentary polls. Both Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah promised to find a position for him at the Centre.

The BJP’s underperformance, despite campaigning by Modi, Amit Shah, and UP CM Yogi Adityanath, is a significant concern for the saffron party. These results are troubling for the BJP, especially with state assembly elections scheduled for October this year. The victories of Congress candidates suggest that Bhupinder Singh Hooda is the party’s primary draw in the state, as most Congress tickets in Haryana were distributed based on his recommendations.

Hooda’s unexpected choice, Satpal Brahamchari from Haridwar, surprised everyone by winning the Sonipat seat. His surprise pick in Gurgaon, Raj Babbar, lost to BJP’s Rao Inderjit Singh but put up a strong fight against the Union minister.

All candidates from the Indian National Lok Dal (INLD), formerly the state’s primary opposition party, and its breakaway faction, the Dushyant Chautala-led JJP, which had been in a power-sharing arrangement with the BJP for the past four-and-a-half years, failed to secure enough votes to retain their deposits on all seats.

Key victors in Haryana include Kumari Selja (Congress) from Sirsa, Hooda (Congress) from Rohtak, Khattar (BJP) from Karnal, and Union ministers Rao Inderjit Singh and Krishan Pal from Gurgaon and Faridabad, respectively. Among the defeated candidates are Ranjit Singh Chautala (BJP), son of former deputy PM Devi Lal, Banto Kataria (BJP), widow of former Union minister Rattan Lal Kataria, Sushil Gupta (AAP), former RS MP, Congress’s LA Rao Dan Singh, and BJP MLA Mohan Lal Badoli.

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