Lok Sabha polls: Will Uttar Pradesh be jewel in BJP’s crown again? - Hindustan Times
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Lok Sabha polls: Will Uttar Pradesh be jewel in BJP’s crown again?

By, Lucknow
Jun 04, 2024 07:50 AM IST

The BJP won 71 of 80 Lok Sabha seats from Uttar Pradesh in 2014 and 62 in the 2019 parliamentary polls, forming the government at the Centre on both occasions

Will Uttar Pradesh be the jewel in the BJP’s crown again when the 2024 Lok Sabha election results come on Tuesday?

The BJP’s vote share improved from 42.63% in 2014 to 49.98% in 2019 in Uttar Pradesh. (FILE PHOTO)
The BJP’s vote share improved from 42.63% in 2014 to 49.98% in 2019 in Uttar Pradesh. (FILE PHOTO)

The state, which sent nine Prime Ministers -- from the first PM Jawaharlal Nehru to the present PM Narendra Modi -- to Parliament, contributed a major chunk of seats to the BJP’s tally on the road to power in 2014 and 2019 Lok Sabha elections.

Modi, who won the poll from the Varanasi Lok Sabha constituency on both occasions, is seeking a third term for his government at the Centre in 2024 polls. As the opposition, mainly the Samajwadi Party-Congress, has made all-out efforts to lead the INDIA bloc’s campaign and stop the BJP’s march to New Delhi via Uttar Pradesh, all eyes will be set on their performance.

The “double engine” government (Modi regime at the Centre and the Yogi Adityanath government in U.P.) had a long list of achievements to tell the people about but the BJP’s poll campaign focused more on the INDIA bloc’s so-called policies of Muslim appeasement.

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The prime minister had alleged that the Congress manifesto carried the Muslim League imprint and the grand old party may take the people’s property, even the “Mangalsutra” of women, away from them. On the other hand, the INDIA bloc accused the BJP of planning to change the Constitution of India and do away with reservation. For its part, the Opposition alliance promised to scrap schemes like Agniveer.

The BJP won 71 of 80 Lok Sabha seats from Uttar Pradesh against 282 of the 543 seats that the party won in India in 2014 polls. Its ally Apna Dal (S) also won two seats in Uttar Pradesh.

In 2019, the BJP’s tally was 62 out of 80 Lok Sabha seats in the state against 303 seats that the party won nationwide. Once again, its ally Apna Dal (S) won two seats.

Though the BJP’s vote share improved from 42.63% in 2014 to 49.98% in 2019 in the state, its number of Uttar Pradesh seats came down from 71 to 62. This was mainly because the BSP and the SP, who formed an alliance, won 10 and five seats respectively in 2019 against only five seats that the SP won in 2014. The BSP was not able to open its account in 2014. The Congress, which won two seats in 2014, won only Rae Bareli in 2019.

The SP and the BSP parted ways soon after the 2019 Lok Sabha polls. The SP and the Congress’ move to join hands in 2024 Lok Sabha polls, however, has been in focus. Alliances have not worked for the Congress. Its move of joining hands with the BSP in 1996 and with the Samajwadi Party in the 2017 UP assembly polls failed to make a mark.

It remains to be seen whether the SP-Congress alliance is able to make an impression and will the BSP be able to make its presence felt.

Though the BJP and the INDIA bloc have made claims and counter claims about winning seats in Uttar Pradesh, both face the real test of validating their claims on the counting day on Tuesday.

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