Latest News Of Kashmir And Daily Newspaper

BIHAR ELECTION ANALYSIS


Rakesh Agarwal


Patna: The inaugural session of newly constituted Bihar Assembly last week made few headlines. First and foremost was an alleged audio conversation of Lalu Prasad Yadav with BJP MLA Lallan Paswan from Ranchi prison to remain absent in election of Speaker. An FIR has also been filed by Lallan Paswan in this matter. Akhtarul Imam, AIMIM Bihar unit head and MLA from Amour constituency in Purnea district used word “Hindustan” in place of “Bharat” while taking oath. The Pro-term speaker however allowed use of word Hindustan. Another Muslim Congress MLA from Kasba Shakeel Ahmad took oath in Sanskrit. Shakeel Ahmad is an alumnus of Jawahar Lal University (JNU) said that his act was to showcase our beautiful culture. BJP got another shot in its arm when its Lakheesarai MLA Vijay Sinha was elected Speaker to the Assembly by securing 126 votes as against 114 of Mahagadhbandhan. Vijay Sinha defeated Mahagadhbandhan nominee Awadh Bihari Chaudhary. The JDU issued last minute whip directing its MLAs to remain present in Assembly during voting for Speaker.
Analysis of this election result data show some most striking and significant features. Hilsa JDU candidate Krishnamurari Sinha alias Prem Mukhiya defeated RJD candidate Atri Muni alias Ranjit Singh by supposedly thinnest ever margin of 12 votes. JDU candidate from Warisnagar Ashok Kumar won with highest margin of 58573 votes.
JDU candidate polled 61848 votes while RJD candidate got 61836 votes. There are 11 seats where victory margin is less than 1000 votes. The vote share of the two alliances is almost identical. It is 37.3% for NDA (125 seats) and 37.2% for Mahagadhbandhan (110 seats). It is the smallest majority for ruling alliance since 2005.
The newly constituted Assembly (Vidhan Sabha) represents some facts to ponder. Despite RJD getting highest vote share of 23.11%, it could not form the government. Congress, the grand old party of India and an ally in MGB could muster only 9.48% vote share and is considered the main reason in keeping MGB out of power. BJP has got best strike rate (number of seats won against number of seats contested) with 67.27% whereas Communist Party of India (ML) has 63.16%. BJP also won 12 seats out of 32 seats with over 30% population of Muslim population mostly in Seemanchl region. Based on the report of Election Watch and Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) out of all newly elected members 163 (68%) have declared criminal cases against them. 123 of such MLAs (51%) have declared serios criminal cases. The number of Yadav MLAs is maximum in the Assembly. Behind them are Dalit MLAs. Considering the first Assembly election of undivided Bihar in 1952, Kayastha and Scheduled Tribes have suffered huge losses. There were 21 and 27 MLAs from these communities then, whereas today they have only 3 and 2 MLAs respectively. Brahmins are also at loss from 30 MLAs to 11. (See chart below)

SEATS
243
243
324
324
276

CASTE
NO OF MLAs 2020
NO OF MLAs 2015
NO OF MLAs 1995
NO OF MLAs 1990
NO OF MLAs 1952

YADAV
61
61
84
62
20

DALIT
39
38
49
48
35

MUSLIM
24
24
29
25
23

KUSHWAHA
20
20
22
13
11

RAJPUT
20
20
31
41
36

BHUMIHAR
18
17
19
36
25

BACKWARDS
17
18
10
3
3

VAISHYA
16
13
17
20
8

KURMI
12
16
19
16
9

BRAHMIN
11
10
10
27
30

KAYASTHA
3
4
7
4
21

ST
2
2
27
29
27

Lalu Prasad Yadav is credited with caste politics in Bihar. After becoming Chief Minister in 1990, he started polarising communities on caste basis taking full advantage of Mandal Commission recommendations. His MY (Muslim Yadav) formula is still remembered and RJD banks upon this equation to a great extent even today, although Nitish Kumar has made a sizeable dent in Muslim population after he came to power. Another slogan coined by Lalu Prasad Yadav was ‘BHURA BAAL SAAF KARO’. In English it is translated as ‘Get rid of grey hairs’ but it was not meant by Lalu Yadav. He referred it to eliminate the so called forward class comprising Bhumihaar (BHU), Rajput (RA), Brahmin (B) and Kayastha (L for Lala). Backward communities in Bihar got maximum benefit by this kind of Lalu Nitish politics. Number of women legislators have also gone up. There were only 13 women legislators in the first Assembly but today their number is 26. JDU and LJP both nominated 22 women candidates this time but due to poor performance of their own, only 6 could win out of 44 contested. 9 women candidates of BJP won from total 13 nominated by the party. The best result came from VIP and HAM whose lone candidates won from their respective seats. All five allies of Mahagadhbandhan (MGB) fielded only 25 women candidates and 9 of are elected. With Bihar politics still revolving primarily around caste lines, number of MLAs from any particular caste matters.