Updated June 5th, 2024 at 15:11 IST

Setback for BJP in Uttar Pradesh as Seat Tally Halves from 62 to 33 in Lok Sabha Elections

Setback for the BJP in Uttar Pradesh was uniform across the board, with all regions sending nearly half of its contestants this time to the Parliament as compared to the previous general election. Lok Sabha seats in Uttar Pradesh are generally divided across six regions.

UP CM Yogi | Image:PTI
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Setback for the BJP in Uttar Pradesh was uniform across the board, with all regions sending nearly half of its contestants this time to the Parliament as compared to the previous general election.

Lok Sabha seats in Uttar Pradesh are generally divided across six regions –- Western Uttar Pradesh, Purvanchal, Bundelkhand, Awadh, Braj, and Rohilkhand.

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The BJP, which romped to power in 2019 on the back of an unequivocal mandate from UP, winning 62 of its 80 seats, was cut to size this time and had to be content with only 33 seats.

While a political post mortem is still underway, the party's halving came despite a fiery campaign, which featured a communally charged rhetoric, a castigating contrast between "Ram Bhakts" and "Ram Drohis," and vote-seeking in the name of a temple.

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UP's 80 seats are distributed thus: Western UP-10, Braj-8, Awadh-20, Rohilkhand-11, Bundelkhand-5, and Purvanchal-26.

In Western UP — composed of Saharanpur, Kairana, Muzaffarnagar, Bijnor, Nagina, Amroha, Meerut, Baghpat, Ghaziabad, and Gautam Buddha Nagar -- BJP won four seats, down from six in 2019. Its ally RLD won two seats.

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Of Awadh's 20 seats, which include such key constituencies as Amethi, Raebareli, and Lucknow, BJP could win only nine, while SP and Congress won seven and four seats.

The biggest blow in the region came from Faizabad, the city of the newly constructed Ram temple, which sent the BJP candidate packing despite a vociferous campaign by the party in the name of Ram.

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Maneka Gandhi and Smriti Irani, both big leaders from the party, lost Sultanpur and Amethi. Irani's defeat seemed to hurt the party more, delivered as it was by a Congress debutante.

The margin of Rajnath Singh's victory in Lucknow too narrowed to about 1.5 lakh from 3.47 lakh in 2019.

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The Rohilkhand region – which has Budaun and Bulandshahr among its 11 seats – gave no succour to the party, which won four seats from there, down from nine last time.

Union Minister Ajay Mishra Teni, whose son Ashish Mishra allegedly mowed down farmers part of a protest rally in 2021, lost from the region's Kheri seat.

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Bundelkhand, considered UP's most backward and driest region, threw the most telling verdict for the BJP.

Of the region's five seats, BJP managed to wrest only one – Jhansi. The party had swept the region winning all five seats in 2019.

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From the Purvanchal region, which has such key constituencies as Gorakhpur, Azamgarh, and Mirzapur, BJP won 10 seats, down from 18 the last time.

Even though Prime Minister Narenda Modi made a hat-trick from Varanasi, his victory margin came down to 1.52 lakh from 4.79 lakh in 2019.

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Braj (Mathura, Hathras etc) was less harsh on the ruling party, which won five seats from the region, down from seven in 2019.

Though the party has said it will review its performance, Samajwadi Party leader Rajpal Kashyap termed it the verdict of the people, who voted to protect the Constitution and keep reservation intact. 

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Published June 5th, 2024 at 15:11 IST