Ghaziabad General Election Results Analysis
The number game in Ghaziabad
The Ghaziabad constituency in Uttar Pradesh, once a much neglected part of the state, had turned into a needle contest in the 2014 Parliamentary elections. Ex-army Chief and BJP candidate Vijay Kumar Singh, who had been considered as an 'outsider' by many, won the elections by a vote-margin which was one of the greatest that this general elections threw up.
He defeated his closest political rival Raj Babbar of the Congress, with an unassailable vote margin of over 5,67,000 votes. Although the Ghaziabad constituency was projected as witnessing a triangular fight between Singh, Babbar and AAP candidate Shazia Ilmi, as far as the electorate was concerned, Ilmi could provide no challenge to either Singh or Babbar. More successful were candidates from the BSP and the SP-while BSP's Mukul Upadhayay polled a little more than one and a half lakh votes, SP candidate Sudhan Rawat bagged a little more than 1 lakh votes.
Why Ghaziabad is an important constituency
Ghaziabad Parliamentary constituency fought its first general polls in the 15th Lok Sabha elections in 2009. Out of the 10 constituencies won by the BJP in the most populous state of Uttar Pradesh in 2009, Ghaziabad was one and inevitably, one of the most important victories of the saffron brigade. Its sitting MP was Rajnath Singh, who is presently the party President of the BJP.
Ghaziabad as a constituency, presented different and many pockets of vote-banks across the rich and posh sub urban and deprived, agricultural rural tracts in the region-while there are the Rajput and the Vaishya communities, there are also the minority communities of Muslims and dalits.
In such a setting, analysing former General V. K. Singh's victory by such a massive margin, requires deep analysis.
Vote-bank politics disappears?
One of the characteristic features of India's politics, from as early as the country's first democratic experience, has been vote-bank politics. Pockets of votes, along particular identities of caste, class and religion have been reserved for the kitties of this or that political party. In Ghaziabad for instance, opinion polls were directed to indicate that Muslim votes would go to the SP, as it was the secular face of the country. Some other groups of Muslims showed their allegiance towards the Mayawati-led BSP, another secular force to reckon with. Some pockets of the population showed allegiance in the opinion polls, to the Rajput candidate V.K. Singh, while Babbar, because of his constant participation in the farmers' struggles in the region in 2006-2007, claimed to draw support from the rural sections in Ghaziabad.
However, the results have brought in surprising changes. For one, in the history of independent India, the voting trends have come out of its vote-bank kitties, and the people of India seem to have unanimously voted. One singular factor seemed to played havoc in the 2014 elections, from which even the contrasting Ghaziabad social structure could not escape-the Modi wave, the Tsunamo as many are calling it. Coming out of narrow divides of caste, class, religion, ethnicity and race, people of Ghaziabad, as the rest of India, have unitedly upheld Modi and his discourse of 'development' and got rid of the Congress. This explains the huge vote margin by which Singh won, in spite of Raj Babbar's immense popularity in the region.
Secondly, Babbar's defeat does not come as a surprise, when one goes to analyse the people's mandate against the Congress as a whole. The Congress has been unanimously ousted from the politics of the country, because of its mastery of corruption at different levels. Babbar's defeat must be analysed in the overall embarrassing receptivity levels of the Congress in the country.
V.K. Singh's win, though not absolutely expected, cannot be said to be a shocker. In the overall context of the surging Modi wave on which the BJP rode this election, Singh's victory, in spite of the clean sweep of Babbar as was being anticipated, comes in as a welcoming corollary.
Ghaziabad General Election Result 2014
|Vijay Kumar Singh||Bharatiya Janata Party||758482|
|Raj Babbar||Indian National Congress||191222|
|Mukul||Bahujan Samaj Party||173085|
|Sudhan Kumar||Samajwadi Party||106984|
|Shazia Ilmi Malik||Aam Aadmi Party||89147|
|Suresh Pal||Bharatiya Sarvodaya Kranti Party||1591|
|Naresh Gautam||Bahujan Mukti Party||1548|
|Rinku Kumar Tyagi||Independent||1185|
|Vinod Kumar Tyagi||Independent||992|
|None of the Above||None of the Above||6205|