NDA Faces Significant Losses in UP During Lok Sabha Elections

Khushbu Kumari Jha
NDA Faces Significant Losses in UP During Lok Sabha Elections
NDA Faces Significant Losses in UP During Lok Sabha Elections

Analysis of the factors leading to NDA’s losses in UP during the Lok Sabha elections.

The results of the Lok Sabha elections indicate that the NDA suffered the most losses in Uttar Pradesh (UP). The BJP not only failed to increase its seats but also struggled to retain the existing ones. The SP-Congress alliance provided stiff competition, pushing the NDA to the brink of defeat. Here are the five reasons that contributed to BJP's setback in UP:

1. Candidate Selection

From the onset of the election, it was apparent that the BJP made several mistakes in candidate selection. Disregarding local discontent, tickets were awarded to unpopular figures. This led to voter apathy among traditional BJP supporters, resulting in a significant drop in voter turnout. The BJP's vote share fell from approximately 50% in 2019 to around 42% this time, marking an 8% decline.

2. SP’s Strategic Candidate Selection

Historically, the SP has faced accusations of favoring candidates from specific communities or castes. However, this election saw Akhilesh Yadav adopting a more inclusive approach, selecting candidates based on caste equations. This strategy paid off, with SP candidates posing a strong challenge to the BJP in several constituencies such as Meerut, Ghosi, and Mirzapur.

3. Controversy Over Changing the Constitution

After Prime Minister Narendra Modi's call for surpassing 400 seats, some BJP leaders suggested this was necessary to amend the constitution. The Congress and SP capitalized on this, alleging that the BJP aimed to abolish reservations. This narrative resonated strongly with Dalits and OBCs, leading to a significant shift in their votes towards the SP-Congress alliance.

4. Unemployment and Paper Leaks

The BJP government faced persistent criticism for failing to provide jobs and for frequent exam paper leaks. Many youths, preparing for competitive exams for years, felt disillusioned due to age limits and lack of opportunities. This frustration was palpable on the ground, leading to a notable decline in youth support for the BJP.

5. Impact of Mayawati’s Candidates

Mayawati's strategic placement of candidates indirectly benefited the SP-Congress alliance. This maneuver led to a significant division of the Dalit vote, adversely affecting the BJP. Particularly in Western UP, BSP candidates caused substantial damage to BJP's prospects, making contests in seats like Meerut, Muzaffar Nagar, Chandauli, Kheri, and Ghosi highly competitive.