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Can the BSP-INLD alliance eclipse Congress’ hopes of returning to power in Haryana?

Nita Yadav

By Nita Yadav

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Abhay Chautala and Mayawati have met

With three months left for the Haryana assembly elections, the political chessboard has begun. The Congress is buoyed by the Lok Sabha election results and is keen to make a comeback, while the BJP is trying to achieve a hat-trick of power. At the same time, there are plans to contest elections together between BSP and INLD, which may be formally announced in four-five days. If the INLD and BSP enter the polls in alliance, the hopes of the Congress may be eclipsed politically and it may be favorable for the BJP, as both have similar votebanks.

BSP chief Mayawati and INLD general secretary Abhay Singh Chautala met in Lucknow. Meanwhile, an agreement has been reached between the two parties to contest the elections together. In such a scenario, INLD is trying to form a third front in Haryana and has started playing the political chessboard. After getting green signal from BSP, it is now trying to unite non-Congress and non-BJP parties. INLD state president Rampal Majra has written on Twitter, ‘We are bringing like-minded people together on one platform. All non-BJP and non-Congress organizations, political organizations and social organizations of the state are requested to come along.

Whose vote share and how much?

Congress and BJP have got five seats each in the Lok Sabha elections. Out of 10 Lok Sabha seats in the state, BSP contested in 9 seats, while INLD fielded candidates in seven seats, but both parties failed to open their accounts. A direct contest between the Congress and the BJP has led to an increase in the votes of both parties, while the votes of other regional parties have declined. Lok Sabha and Assembly elections are conducted in different ways. The coming together of INLD and BSP can completely change the political game in Haryana as the political base of Congress and INLD-BSP is on the same vote bank.

In 2014, the INLD won more assembly seats than the Congress and the BJP formed the government with an absolute majority, but in 2019, the political equations of Haryana have changed. The INLD suffered political losses due to its split into two factions. Haryana has 90 assembly seats. In 2019, BJP won 40 seats with 36.49 percent votes, while Congress remained with 31 seats with 28.08 percent vote share. Congress won 16 seats while INLD suffered a political loss. BJP formed the government with JJP.

The alliance broke up before the 2019 elections

BSP did not win a single seat in Haryana in 2019, but it got 4.21 percent votes. Since 1989, BSP has had four and a half to five percent vote share in the state. The INLD got 2.44 percent of the votes in the last election, but before that it got 24 percent of the votes. Congress has managed to win 5 Lok Sabha seats in 2024 based on Dalit and Jat votes only. The Congress too has planned to contest the assembly elections on this equation, but the political base of BSP and INLD is Jat-Dalit. Therefore, if BSP-INLD comes along, Congress will suffer the most. Opposition parties’ votes in Haryana are split against the BJP, benefiting the BJP and hurting the Congress.

The BSP has been trying its luck in Haryana politics since the 1989 Lok Sabha elections. In the 1998 elections, the BSP formed an alliance with the INLD and fielded its candidates on three seats, of which it won one seat. The two parties joined hands again for 2019, but the alliance fell apart before the elections. While the Congress is doing all it can to capture the votes of the anti-incumbency wave in Haryana, the INLD-BSP have joined hands again. It is believed that there may be a 50-40 seat sharing formula between the two. INLD can contest on 50 and BSP on 40 seats. BSP got more votes than INLD in 2019 elections.

BSP-INLD may spoil the Congress game

The INLD got 1.74 percent votes in the 2024 Lok Sabha elections and only 2.44 percent votes in the 2019 assembly elections. The BSP got 1.28 percent votes in the Lok Sabha this time and 4.21 percent votes in the 2019 assembly elections. In the 2019 assembly elections, BSP got more than 40 thousand votes in one seat and INLD in two seats. BSP got between 5 thousand and 40 thousand votes in 20 seats and INLD in five seats. However, both the parties had contested the elections separately and if they contest the polls together this time, there could be a political upheaval in at least 25 to 30 assembly seats.

There are about 10 seats in the 2019 assembly elections in Haryana where the margin of victory and defeat was less than 2.5 thousand. Congress has lost some of these seats. If Congress wins these seats, it would have become the single largest party in the state. In such a situation, the difference between victory and defeat in 20 assembly seats was less than 5 thousand. If the 2024 assembly polls could disrupt the political game of Congress by fighting with BSP and INLD, could it be an opportunity for BJP to score a hat-trick of power?

Nita Yadav

Nita Yadav

I am Nita Yadav, specializing in writing about politics and breaking national news. My focus is on delivering insightful and timely perspectives on these crucial topics, aiming to inform and engage my readers effectively.

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