Migrants make up almost half of Delhi’s population and hence every political party is vying to win them over.
According to the HT-C fore survey, people who have migrated to the Capital from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar (the Purvanchali voters), show a distinct preference for the ruling party over the main rival Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
Among UP migrants, 32% favour the Congress and 26% said they would vote for the BJP, followed by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) at 20% and Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) at 17%.
Support for the Congress among Bihar migrants is higher at 36%, followed by the BJP (27%), AAP (19%) and BSP (12%).
Among migrants from West Bengal, one of the biggest communities in Delhi, Congress has overwhelming support with 43% and the BJP a distant second with 26% supporters. Migrants from Punjab too are expected to largely vote for the Congress (34%), even though BJP is close on its heels (30%).
The communities from where the BJP can expect majority votes are the migrants from Uttarakhand and Rajasthan, with 36% and 34% inclined to vote for the saffron party, respectively.
Congress, however, is not too far with 31% and 28% supporters, respectively.Among migrants from Haryana, the state which borders Delhi on three sides, it is a close contest between the two major parties with 33% favouring the Congress and 32% supporting the BJP.
According to experts, the identity of the contestant in an election plays a bigger role than ideology when it comes to voting.
“Voters seek identification with the local leader, to which category or region he or she belongs. Migrants from ‘Purvanchal’ (eastern UP and Bihar), for instance, are dominant in the Shahdara area while Punjabi Bagh and Chittaranjan Park have different voting pattern altogether,” said Vivek Kumar, associate professor, Centre for the Study of Social Systems, JNU.