Congress’ loss is BJP’s gain
Nation eagerly awaits the conclusion of the final phase of the polls and thereafter the announcement of the results four days later. Already the writing on the wall is clear – people want change. Picking up the thread several opinion polls have begun speculating the numbers.
The Congress party, facing anti-incumbency due to allegations of corruption, mal-administration and not being able to check rising prices and unemployment, is likely to reduce its strength. By how much is the real question? Will the loss to the INC mean gain for BJP? In 2009 polls, the Congress gaining 206 seats could lead the UPA-II coalition in the 543-member house. Among states, its major support base was from Andhra Pradesh where it won 33 out of 42 seats. In 2004 polls also, the Congress won 29 seats that pushed the party to get 145 seats and lead the UPA coalition. This was possible due to the popularity of the then Chief Minister Y S Rajashekhara Reddy. But unfortunately, the party is unlikely to repeat its victory card this time in Andhra Pradesh. The tragic death of YSR Reddy came as a setback to the Congress. The party refused to pass on the mantle to his son Jagan who broke away and formed the YSR Congress. The subsequent Congress leadership in the state, riddled with factionalism, could not live up to the expectations of the people. Added to this the bifurcation of the state engineered by UPA-II has left the people of Seemandhra region unhappy. In Seemandhra region which has 25 seats, the Congress is likely to fare miserably. In this region TDP which has alliance with BJP and also the YSR Congress stand to gain. In Telangana, which has 17 seats, the TRS is likely to gain at the expenses of the Congress.
Next to undivided Andhra Pradesh, Congress garnered 21 seats in UP followed by 20 in Rajasthan in 2009 polls. These scores were impressive as compared to 2004 polls when the Congress secured nine seats in UP and 4 seats in Rajasthan. Other states where the Congress scored in double digits in 2009 were Maharashtra (17), Kerala (13) and Madhya Pradesh (12). But this magic is unlikely to be repeated at 2014 polls. In UP, the BJP has put up an aggressive campaign to gain maximum seats out of the total 80 in the state.
In this situation it seems that the Congress is likely to lose around 100 out 206 seats it had gained in the 2009 general elections. The moot question is which party is likely to gain at the expense of the