The Bharatiya Janata Party and Prime Minister Narendra Modi have plenty of reasons to celebrate. The party scripted history on Saturday when it surged ahead in Uttar Pradesh with a massive lead in 308 seats (according to early trends projected by CNN-News18), its biggest win in 30 years.
The party trounced the Samajwadi Party-Congress combine as the Akhilesh-Rahul alliance was trailing with lead in merely 74 seats (as of 10.30 am). The BJP is headed for its biggest ever haul in India's most populous state. With a lead in 308 seats, the BJP has probably shocked itself by going way over its magic mark of 202.
Several senior BJP leaders like Ravi Shankar Prasad, UP unit chief Keshav Prasad Maurya and others hailed the mandate, which observers say is the party's highest ever in the state. Let's see the BJP trajectory in Uttar Pradesh since 1991, when the first BJP leader became the chief minister.
In 1991, BJP contested on 415 seats, won 221 seats with 31.45 percent vote share. Party's first chief minister for the state Kalyan Singh was removed after Babri Masjid fell in 1992. In 1993, BJP contested on 422 seats and won 177 with a vote share of 33.03 percent. Over the years (1996, 2002, 2007 and 2012) BJP's hold over the state slumped to — 174, 88, 51 and 47 respectively.
The BJP sweep in Uttar Pradesh will be credited to only one person — Narendra Modi — who led the poll campaigning for his party himself, like all the other times in every other state assembly election. However, this win cannot be taken away from the prime minister or his Man Friday Amit Shah who had taken it upon himself to prove the Modi brand in the run-up to the Assembly election.
The party's leads in Bareilly and Awadh showed the kind of progress it has made since the last Assembly elections. It is now leading in 8 out of the 10 seats Awadh and seven out of the nine seats in Bareilly. SP-Congress alliance is currently a distant second, closely followed by the BSP in third. BJP's 2017 mandate, with a trend of 308 seats out of the 403 seats, is the fourth best result of all times in Uttar Pradesh since 1952. In 1952, Congress, in first ever elections held in the state, won by 388 seats while Janata Party in 1977, in post-Emergency elections, won 352 seats.
In 1980, when former prime minister Indira Gandhi was slated to return to power, Uttar Pradesh voted the leader in with a whopping victory in 309 seats. And in 2017, the BJP and Modi took the state by storm when the trends showed the party is leading in 308 seats.
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Updated Date: Mar 11, 2017 15:21:15 IST