Mamata vs BJP: Who had the edge in Bengal’s close-contest seats?

While analysing their defeat in West Bengal, BJP leaders have repeatedly stated that they misplaced a number of close-contest seats that sealed their destiny in the elections. However, information suggests this isn’t true.

In Bihar final 12 months, 52 of the 243 meeting seats (21 per cent) witnessed shut contests, with the margin of victory under 5,000 votes. In Bengal, the quantity stood at 36 out of 292 seats (12 per cent).

Bengal witnessed polling in 292 of the 294 seats in eight phases, the outcomes of which had been declared on May 2. The incumbent Trinamool Congress won 213 seats with a vote share of 48 per cent, whereas the BJP managed to bag 77 seats with a vote share of 38 per cent.

To examine what number of seats recorded an in depth contest and who emerged the winner in them, we analysed the meeting seat-wise margin of victory for the state.

Among the 292 seats, there have been 223 the place the victory margin was above 10,000 votes, indicating a wholesome lead.

Of these, Trinamool had received 176 and BJP 46. One seat, Bhangar in South 24 Parganas, was received by the Rashtriya Secular Majlis Party, the banner below which Left ally Indian Secular Front contested. In one other 33 seats, the victory margin was between 5,000 and 10,000 votes. Among these, 24 had been received by the Trinamool and 9 by BJP.

The remaining 36 seats had a margin of lower than 5,000 votes. These seats are thought of shut or essential as a result of the distinction in votes between the winner and runner-up might be lower than 2 per cent. Incidentally, the BJP received 22 of those seats, whereas the Trinamool edged forward in 13. One seat, Kalimpong, was received by an Independent candidate.

For additional evaluation, we broke up the 36 districts into 4 components – margin of victory under 500; between 500 and 1,000; between 1,000 and a pair of,000; and between 2,000 and 5,000. This categorisation threw up some attention-grabbing information.

Two seats – Dinhata in Cooch Behar and Balarampur in Purulia – had a victory margin of lower than 500 votes. Both these seats went to the BJP. Of the 5 seats with a victory margin between 500 and 1,000 votes, three had been received by Trinamool and two by BJP. Jalpaiguri, Tamluk and Dantan went into the Trinamool kitty, whereas Ghatal and Kulti had been bagged by the saffron camp.

Another 5 seats had a victory margin between 1,000 and a pair of,000 votes, all of which went to the BJP. This means amongst the 12 seats with a win margin of lower than 2,000 votes, 9 had been received by the BJP. Of the 24 seats the place the margin of victory was between 2,000 and 5,000 votes, 13 had been received by BJP and 10 by Trinamool.

Infographic by India Today DIU

Moreover, what this information suggests is that of its whole seats, the Trinamool had a cushty victory in 200 seats and an in depth battle in solely 13, or 6 per cent seats. On the different hand, the BJP had a wholesome lead in 53 seats and a decent contest in 22, or 29 per cent seats.

In Bihar, the battle between NDA and UPA was so neck-and-neck that each alliances obtained nearly equal vote share. In absolute phrases, NDA obtained simply 12,000 extra votes than UPA. It, nonetheless, bagged 125 seats, whereas the Mahagathbandhan had to cope with 110. Of its whole seats, the NDA had received 24 seats with a margin under 5,000 votes, and 4 seats with lower than 500 votes.

In the 2019 Lok Sabha election, the BJP surprised everyone by securing a powerful 40 per cent vote share and a lead in 121 meeting segments. The Trinamool had a lead in 164 meeting segments with a vote share of 43 per cent. The saffron camp then had a cushty lead in 101 seats and a skinny margin (under 5,000 votes) in 20 seats.

The Trinamool had a skinny lead in 29 seats.

Infographic by India Today DIU

This is the third consecutive victory for Trinamool in the Bengal meeting election. Since 2011, it has been main in all elections in the state, whether or not meeting or parliamentary. Though the Trinamool’s constituency-wise leads got here down in 2019, its efficiency in the 2016 and 2021 meeting elections is nearly comparable.

In 2016, the social gathering received 196 seats with a cushty victory, whereas in 2021, the quantity was 200; in 2019, it had come all the way down to 135. Similarly, in 2016, it received 15 seats with a margin of lower than 5,000 votes, whereas in 2021, this quantity was 13.

Infographic by India Today DIU

Nowhere does electoral information recommend that the just-concluded polls in Bengal had been an in depth contest. Though Bengal has all the time had a robust anti-establishment vote, the electoral end result in the state has by no means been shut since 1971. In that election, each Left and Congress received greater than 100 meeting seats. Since then, no runner-up has been in a position to cross the 100 digit-mark in an meeting election. Incidentally, besides 2001, the profitable social gathering (or alliance) has all the time obtained over 200 seats in the Bengal meeting election.

(Ashish Ranjan is an impartial researcher)

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