BSP fails to shed ‘one-seat wonder’ tag, vote share dips

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Karnal
  • Updated: Oct 20, 2014 19:27 IST

The Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) still remains a ‘one seat wonder’ in Haryana’s state politics as its social engineering formula flopped miserably for the second consecutive time.

With 4.3% vote share, it managed to get the tag of the fourth largest political party in the state, but political observers say that social unacceptability of its formulae and lack of leadership were behind the dismal performance of the party. Tek Chand Sharma won the lone seat for the party from the Prithla seat in Faridabad by a margin of 1,179 votes. Maratha Virender Verma, a Ror leader, was the runner-up at Assandh in Karnal and lost to Bakhshish Singh Virk by 4,608 votes.

“Voters were looking for a change, but in the absence of a credible political alternative, BJP seized the chance. The BSP has either political turncoats or inexperienced faces. No leader of sound political standing emerging ensured BSP failed to get response from voters,” said an analyst.

Maiden win outside Yamunanagar

It is for the first time that the BSP has won any seat outside Yamunanagar district and political observers said Sharma, being a local leader, was able to polarise non-Jat voters as rest of key contestants were from Jat community. This time, BSP’s only sitting legislator from Jagadhari seat in Yamunanagar district Akram Khan lost to Kanwar Pal of the BJP by 34,156 votes.

In 2000, Bishan Lal Saini was elected to the assembly from Jagadhari. In 2005, BSP candidate Arjan Singh was elected from Chahhrauli in Yamunanagar, and INLD state secretary Akram Khan from Jagadhari in 2009 to become deputy speaker. BSP’s CM candidate Arvind Sharma lost from Yamunanagar and Julana in Jind district. In the 2009 parliamentary elections too, the social engineering formula did not translate into seats, but the BSP surged ahead to finish second in vote share in Haryana, trebling its 2004 share of 4.98% to 15.73%.

The gain was seen as a direct impact of the charisma of Mayawati, who was the then Uttar Pradesh chief minister, BSP chief, and was being unofficially projected as prime ministerial candidate. This time also, she announced to appoint a non-Jat leader as the CM of Haryana.However, in charge of political affairs of BSP Rajbir Singh told HT on phone on Sunday evening that in spite best efforts, the BSP failed to consolidate non-Jat voters.

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