BJP in mi­nor­ity in LS?

The Free Press Journal - - FRONT PAGE -

This could be the defin­ing mo­ment for BJP: Af­ter the lat­est losses, BJP's cur­rent tally in the Lok Sabha is 272, down from 282 that it had won in 2014. That means it is vir­tu­ally in mi­nor­ity in Lok Sabha.

The BJP's strength comes from its al­lies, in­clud­ing AIADMK (37) and TDP (16) who are ag­i­tated in Par­lia­ment over the Cen­tre not con­ced­ing their de­mands. The other al­lies are: Shiv Sena (18), Lok Jan Shakti Party and Akali Dal (4), Rashtriya Lok Samta Party (3), Apna Dal (2), PDP (1) and Swab­hi­mani Party (1).

The losses in UP are not iso­lated: In all the six Lok Sabha by­polls this year, BJP has drawn a blank. In Jan­uary this year, the party lost two more Lok Sabha by­polls in Ajmer and Al­war in Ra­jasthan. It also lost in MP.

The BJP's hopes of re-elec­tion at the Cen­tre hinge heav­ily on a good per­for­mance in UP. In 2014, it had, along with al­lies, won 73 out of the state's 80 LS seats.

What is wor­ri­some is that it has lost both the Go­rakh­pur and Phulpur Lok Sabha seats in UP which it had won by a mar­gin of more than

3 lakh votes each in the 2014 elec­tion.

‘’We did not un­der­stand the sig­nif­i­cance of the SP-BSP deal and one of the rea­sons be­hind that fail­ure was our over-con­fi­dence,’’ said Chief Min­is­ter Yogi Adityanath, while con­ced­ing de­feat.

In the same breath, Yogi added, “This op­por­tunis­tic deal be­tween BSP and SP has been forged to put hur­dles in the way of the coun­try's devel­op­ment. We will soon come up with our strat­egy to tackle this.’’ Stung by the un­ex­pected re­ver­sals, BJP said it will go back to the draw­ing board and re­visit its strat­egy ahead of the 2019 Gen­eral Elec­tions, es­pe­cially with the SP and BSP draw­ing closer.’’ Sa­ma­jwadi Party's Na­gen­dra Singh Pa­tel won the Go­rakh­pur Lok Sabha by-elec­tion with a mar­gin of 21,916 votes. The vic­tory in Phulpur was even more em­phatic: the SP can­di­date won by a mar­gin of 59,613 votes. All this does not au­gur well for BJP.

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