Cong May Have Won 10 More Gujarat Seats in Alliance With NCP, BSP
If only the Congress, which gave the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) a tough fight in the recent Gujarat Assembly elections, had joined hands with Sharad Pawar’s Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and Mayawati’s Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), the election results would have been very different.
However, that did not happen, and the outcome is that the Congress is in the opposition and the BJP is going to form the government in the state.
A closer look at the results reveals that BSP and NCP candidates messed up the game for the Congress on a number of seats, letting the BJP win.
The NCP was a part of the Manmohan Singh government at the Centre while the BSP lent outside support. Both parties oppose BJP everywhere, but in Gujarat they ended up eating into Congress votes. The NCP won just one seat and the BSP got nothing.
The BJP won 99 seats in Gujarat while the Congress and its allies got 80. So basically, the Congress got 19 seats less than the winning party. There are at least 10 seats where candidates of former Congress allies cut into the party’s votes. The BSP had candidates contesting from 138 seats, while the NCP contested from 57.
The Congress Could Have Won These Seats:
1. Botad: Lost by 906 Votes
The Congress lost the Botad seat in Saurashtra by just 906 votes, but if it had the BSP and the NCP’s support, it would have won this seat with over a thousand votes.
Dholka: Lost by Just 327 Votes
In Dholka city of the Ahmedabad district, the Congress lost the election by just 327 votes. If BSP and NCP candidates hadn’t been contesting from the same seat, the Congress could have won it by around 4,000 votes.
3. Fatepura Assembly Seat in Dahod
On this seat, the Congress lost by 2,711 votes, but with BSP-NCP support it could have won by a thousand votes.
4. Godhra: Lost by 258 Votes
The party missed Panchmahal’s Godhra seat by a mere 258 votes. It could have easily won with nearly a thousand votes with the BSP’s and NCP’s support.
5. Himmatnagar Seat in Sabarkantha District
This seat was lost by 1,712 votes, but with a BSP-NCP alliance, the Congress could have won from here.
Senior Congress leader Arjun Modhwadia lost the Porbandar seat to BJP's Babu Bokhiria, who got 72,430 votes. The Congress came in second with 70,575 votes. The BSP candidate contesting from this seat got 4,337 votes. If the BSP had supported the Congress, Modhwadia could have won the election by about 2,500 votes.
7. Prantij Seat in Sabarkantha District
BJP’s Gajendra Singh Parmar won from this seat with 83,482 votes. The Congress candidate came in second with 80,931 votes. Meanwhile the the NCP candidate got 3,718 votes and the BSP got 1,079.
Again the Congress could easily have won the seat with the support of the other two parties.
8. Rajkot Rural Assembly Seat
The BJP won the Rajkot Rural Assembly seat with 92,114 votes, while the Congress finished second with 89,935. On the same seat, the BSP got 3,323 votes and the NCP got 880.
9. Umreth Assembly Seat in Anand District
The BJP won the Umreth Assembly seat in Anand district after getting 68,326 votes. The Congress followed with 66,443 votes while the NCP got 35,051. The Congress could have won this seat by a significant margin with NCP support.
The Vijapur seat in Mehsana district was won by the BJP after it received 72,326 votes. The Congress came in second with 71,162, while the BSP got 621 and the NCP 1,037.
A Missed Opportunity
The election numbers for Gujarat are quite clear; the Grand Old Party of India, trying to become the Grand Old Young Party of India, missed its chance in the state.
(This article was originally published in Quint Hindi.)
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