BJP let down by allies; Paswan, Kushwaha, Manjhi fall flat on face

  • Kumar Uttam, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Nov 09, 2015 01:37 IST
Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Union Minister and LJP Leader Ram Vilas Paswan,Jitanram Majhi, Upendra Kushwaha (right) during an election rally amid Bihar Assembly Elections, in Hazipur near Patna on October 25, 2015. (Hindustan Times)

BJP’s allies seem to have contributed significantly to the humiliating defeat that the NDA suffered at the hand of Nitish Kumar-led Grand Alliance in Bihar.

The BJP depended heavily on its three allies — LJP of Ram Vilas Paswan, RLSP of Upendra Kushwaha and HAM-S of Jitan Ram Manjhi — for its victory and left 86 seats for them.

Put together, these three parties won just five seats — two each for Paswan and Kushwaha and one for Manjhi — bringing down the NDA to mere 58 seats.

Paswan contested 42 seats and polled 4.8% votes. It appears that there was not much dent to his traditional Paswan votes, which account for nearly 6% of Bihar’s population.

But, Kushwaha and Manjhi were a big disappointment for the BJP, whose leaders now claim they failed to get votes from their support base.

Kushwahas account for nearly 5% of Bihar voters and Mahadalits, of which Manjhi was a self-styled champion, are nearly 10% of Bihar’s population. RLSP fielded 23 candidates and got less than 3% votes.

The BJP increased its votes share by a few points but it was largely because it contested 55 more seats as compared to 2010.

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