Double whammy for Congress in Madhya Pradesh

Double whammy for Congress in Madhya Pradesh
Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia.

Bhopal: It's a double whammy for Congress in Madhya Pradesh. Though final results are yet to be out, available trends have clearly indicated that the ruling Congress in Madhya Pradesh has been routed and the BJP is heading for a landslide victory in the state. The worst part for the Rahul Gandhi-led Congress is that apart from the huge defeat in the state, all its top leaders have lost the polls. Again, much to the party's chagrin, the margin they lost to the BJP rivals is unimaginably high.

Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia is set to lose the battle to BJP's KP Yadav in his family bastion Guna by at least 1.25 lakh votes.

Former Madhya Pradesh chief Minister Digvijaya Singh is facing a much more embarrassing situation in Bhopal constituency as he is trailing by over 3 lakh votes against Pragya Thakur, who is an accused in the Malegaon bomb blasts case.

The post-results scene in Madhya Pradesh presents a dramatically different picture from what it was five years ago. The most obvious difference is that despite the Congress ruling the state and it wrested power from BJP in the assembly polls just a few months ago after 15 years of the saffron rule, the BJP is leading in 28 seats out of a total 29. In 2014 Lok Sabha polls, the BJP had won 27 seats, Congress had just two seats.

The BJP is leading in all the eight seats of Mlawa-Nimar region, considered to be a saffron stronghold. In 2014, the BJP had won all the eight seats.

The only seat where Congress is doing well is Chhindwara where Congress candidate Nakul Nath, son of Chief Minister Kamal Nath, was ahead of BJP's Nathanshah Kawreti by a margin of over 20,000 votes.

Union ministers Narendra Singh Tomar and Virendra Singh were also leading in Morena and Tikamgarh Lok Sabha seats.

In Indore, BJP nominee Shankar Lalwani was ahead by 1,42,269 votes against Congress's Pankaj Sanghvi. Similarly, BJP's Vishnu Dutt Sharma was leading by 1,06,414 votes against Congress's Kavita Singh in Khajuraho seat.

Elections in Madhya Pradesh have always been a bi-polar contest between the BJP and the Congress.

In the 2018 Assembly elections, the Congress secured 40.9% of the vote share and won 114 seats against BJP's 109.

BJP candidate from Bhopal constituency Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur offers prayers at a temple on the last day of her 72hours bans by election commission, in Bhopal, Saturday, May 4, 2019. The Election Commission on Wednesday, May 01, 2019, barred Thakur from campaigning for 72 hours for her remarks on former ATS chief Hemant Karkare and Babri mosque demolition. (PTI

Congress formed the government with the support of BSP's two MLAs, SP's one and four independents. If the assembly poll voting pattern was to be repeated, the BJP was expected to lose 11 Lok Sabha seats and had an edge in 18 parliamentary segments.

But the BJP managed to regain its lost ground in the past five months. After losing the assembly elections, the RSS-BJP has stitched together an unlikely combination to motivate voters to vote for Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

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