ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Electoral Contests in MP, Chhattisgarh, and Rajasthan

A Tale of Three Figures

Using poll data from the last four Vidhan Sabha elections in Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, and Rajasthan, three findings are distilled in this article. It is noted that the 2018 elections were of great significance in all three states in terms of breaking from the trend of the previous three elections, which makes 2023 even more consequential.

The authors wish to thank Vrinda Mandovra for her excellent research assistance.

Three large Indian states are going to elections in November 2023. Together, the three large states of Madhya Pradesh (MP), Chhattisgarh (CH), and Rajasthan (RA) account for almost 13% of Indias population, covering one-fifth of the area. While these figures are by themselves significant, since these are the most prominent Vidhan Sabha elections taking place a few months before the impending national elections, it makes them even more critical. Even though the idea that state elections impact closely held national ones is a matter of some debate (Chibber 2009; Goyal and Kaushik 2022), the influence of these state elections affects the morale of political parties and even voters in other states. The other interesting aspect about these states is the bipolar nature of their elections in the last several decades, with the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) being the most dominant parties. This mirrors their contests at the national level too.

We dig through the electoral data of the three states and propose three ideas. First, the nature of closely held contests and the rise/fall of the two parties in the last two decades highlight the nature of consistency and the swinging attitude of voters. Second, ascertaining how representative the results have been in the states. And third, are these states truly two-party contest states?

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Published On : 20th Jan, 2024

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