Low voter turnout puts political parties in dilemma in Rajasthan

low voter turnout puts political parties in dilemma in rajasthan

Low voter turnout puts political parties in dilemma in Rajasthan

Low voter turnout in the first phase of Rajasthan’s 12 Lok Sabha constituencies has put political parties in a dilemma and has increased their leaders’ restlessness.

Generally, there is a perception in Rajasthan that if the voting percentage increases in the assembly polls, then the present state government gets tensed. At the same time, if the voting percentage increases in the Lok Sabha, BJP gets benefit. In such a situation, this time the low voting on the 12 seats of the first phase has forced BJP to think over its plan for the second phase of election on 13 seats on April 26.

In yesterday’s election in 12 constituencies the average percentage was 57.88 percent which was 6.15 percent less than the previous LS polls of 2019 (64.02 pc) and 3.79 pc low of 2014 (61.66 pc).

Lowest polling percentage of 49.2 was recorded in Karauli-Dholpur, and highest turnout of 65.6 pc in Sriganganagar. Jaipur rural turnout was 56.5 pc as compared to Jaipur-city turnout of 62.8 pc. The downward trend of voting varied from 2.32 to 7.0 pc in all these constituencies.

Out of 25 LS constituencies, following 12 with 114 contestants went to polling were Sriganganagar, Bikaner, Churu, Jhunjhunu, Sikar, Jaipur-rural, Jaipur, Alwar, Bharatpur, Karauli-Dholpur, Dausa and Nagaur.

Expressing his thanks to voters, the Pradesh Congress Committee President G S Dotasra in his X post said, “Low voting in Rajasthan means disillusionment among the people towards the double engine government and Modi’s guarantees. INDIA alliance will directly benefit from this”.

Quoting Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s statement in a public meeting in Bhilwara, Rajasthan Chief Minister Bhajan Lal Sharma on his X post said, “All 12 LS seats went to poll yesterday would be going to the bag of Modi ji. Rajasthan is going to make a hat trick on all 12 seats”.

Dr B D Kalla, former senior Congress Minister in the Gehlot cabinet and incharge of Bikaner division’s election, told The Statesman today that there were a number of reasons associated with the downing of voters turnout in yesterday polling. Firstly, the farmers were busy in their harvesting and there was no public transport provided to them by political parties to reach out to the booths, Kalla said.

Besides a number of communities (castes) like Rajput and Jats have shown resentment to the political parties (mainly BJP) for not fulfilling their wishes and demands in last ten years, Kalla said, adding there was less enthusiasm in favour of the BJP’s ten years in power and MPs anti-incumbency.

Scorching summer also played a spoilsport in the far flung areas of western Rajasthan ‘s villages and Dhanis, he assessed, saying in the urban areas the voters did not show much interest in the voting as there was lacklustre response of the sitting MPs of BJP in most of the constituencies.

A primary question is also what will be the gap of vote share between BJP and the Congress due to lowered turnout in the Ist phase ? In the 2014 and 2019 LS elections, there was a difference of over 24 percent in the vote share of the BJP and Congress. In 2014, the BJP had a vote share of 55.6 pc against Congress’ 30.7 pc, and in 2019 the BJP secured 58.47 against Congress’ 34.24 percent That was the reason the Congress in Rajasthan lost all 25 seats (zero) in two LS polls; 2014 and 2019.

This time due to low voting, some hope has arisen in Congress. What is the conclusion of this voting percentage? The answer to this question will be available only after the voting for the remaining 13 seats in the second phase on April 26.

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