Fifth phase of polls: BJP set to lose at least 20 seats 

The BJP had won 39 of the 51 seats that went to the polls on May 6

People wait in multiple queues to cast their votes
People wait in multiple queues to cast their votes

NH Political Bureau

As ground reports start pouring in about how polling for the 51 Lok Sabha seats across seven states that went to polls in the fifth phase on May 6 , the writing on the wall for the BJP and its NDA alliance looks increasingly ominous.

One needs to remember that, in 2014, of the 51 seats, the BJP had won 39 of these and NDA 41 with RLSP and LJP having won one seat each. The BJP’s biggest tally came from the states of Uttar Pradesh (14 seats) where it won 12 and from Rajasthan where it had swept all 12 seats.

Initial ground reports suggest that of the UP seats, the Indian National Congress (INC) is slated for overwhelming victories in the Congress bastions of Amethi and Rae Bareli and the SP-BSP-RLD combine winning 8 seats for sure with a possibility of a ninth one in Gonda where it is engaged in a neck and neck fight with the BJP. As of now, the BJP may be only sure of its victory in just 2 seats – Lucknow and Kaiserganj.

Initial reports on the 12 seats of Rajasthan also suggest that the BJP is likely to lose at least six of the seats it had won in 2014.

In Madhya Pradesh too, reports suggest that the BJP may be on sticky ground on at least four of the 7 seats that went to the polls on May 6. In 2014, the BJP had won all 7.

Reports coming from West Bengal are also ominous for the BJP as it looks the All India Trinamool Congress (AITC) is likely to have swept all the 7 seats that went to the polls today by convincing margins. Reports from the five seats in Bihar have not come in when this report was published.

In Jharkhand, of the four seats that went to the polls today, the BJP had won them all in 2014. However, reports suggest they are set to lose at least two of those. Jharkhand Vikas Morcha (P) leader and former state Chief Minister Babulal Marandi, an UPA ally, is set to reconquer his seat of Kodarma, political experts feel after studying the voting pattern.

Looking at the voting pattern across the 51 states, it looks like the BJP’s tally is slated to come down by at least 20 seats from the present 39. This will certainly not bring comfort to those who were hoping for the NDA to get re-elected under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

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