In the absence of any wave in 2019 General Elections, smaller parties in some states could play a bigger role. Traditional voting preferences, caste, and language could influence the upcoming elections. Also, as the Mahagathbandhan has not taken a shape, both BJP and Congress have formed many Nano Gathbandhans with smaller parties.
What will be the role of smaller parties in the elections? How many seats will they impact?
On the seventh edition of ‘RajNiti Elections 2019’, BTVI’s Executive Editor Siddharth Zarabi and panelists discuss 69 Lok Sabha seats where smaller parties are expected to play a big role.
Small parties have the credit of launching big campaigns. They have the ability to shift national attention to particular issues, and can also take votes away from major political party candidates, and thus can influence the outcome of elections. They play an important role by forcing major parties to address issues that might not have been addressed previously.
Mainly, there are two types of small parties – issue-based and candidate-centred. The small parties could change the winner by gaining enough votes that would have otherwise gone to a major party.
But, thus far, they have not obtained significant representation in the government.
Small parties with their decisive vote bank stay relevant in the poll battle. In this election, there are chances of small parties playing a decisive role in the event of BJP and Congress falling short of seats.
The battle is now between major national parties and many nano gathbandhans they have formed with the small parties.
How many Lok Sabha seats smaller parties could impact in 2019 elections?
Psephologist Partha Das takes us through the nano gathbandhan seats in Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra. In Maharashtra’s Akola constituency, he says BBM of Prakash Ambedkar could make a great impact with vote share of 27%.
Likely vote impact percentage of small parties in Maharashtra:
In Amaravati, Das says BSP could make an impact in Amravati, Wardha, Ramtek, Gadchiroli-Chimur, Nagpur.
He says while RPI could also make an impact in Amravati.
Das says dalit votes could make an impact in Marathwada region, and CPM could make an impact in Northern part where there is farmers unrest.
PWPI has its presence in two coastal areas. And, CPM could be part of UPA alliance and they could contest from Dindori seat.
In Palghar region, BVA could get support of Congress and NCP, and in Raigad and Maval, PWPI could get the support of NCP.
In Nanded, Solapur and Aurangabad, the alliance of AIMIM and BBM could make a huge impact.
BJP should minimize its losses to the NDA with no Modi wave this time. By managing a pre-poll tie-up with Shiv Sena in Maharashtra, it has won a strategic battle and prevented potential losses to NDA.
Likely vote impact percentage of regional parties in Bihar:
CPI and CPI ML L could be part of UPA alliance in Bihar, according to sources, says Partha Das.
CPI ML L could impact with their vote share in Siwan, Pataliputra, Arrah, Karakat.
Likely vote impact percentage of small parties in Madhya Pradesh:
In Morena, Gwalior, Khajuraho, Satna, Rewa, Balaghat seats, BSP has a strong presence and they could make an impact with their vote share. SP is likely to make an impact in Tikamgarh.
It should be seen what impact leaders of Nano parties make: NK Singh
Senior Journalist NK Singh Nano says small parties get less than 1% of vote share across the country, but they have a share of nearly 30% in the Indian electorate. Nano parties play a big role in bipolar contest, or during a wave, or when some leader has come out from caste-driven politics, he says. He adds if there is no wave, caste groups play a role in deciding a seat, and that it should be seen how individuals will make an impact on electorate since there is no wave this time.
No ‘pro’ or ‘anti’ wave in this election: Anand Mishra
Anand Mishra, Political Editor, Deccan Herald, says this election won’t witness a strong ‘pro’ or ‘anti’ wave, expects keen contests in Bihar and Maharashtra between BJP and Congress as both the parties have formed good alliances with other parties. He further says both BJP and Congress are wooing smaller parties to clinch their seats.
Likely vote impact percentage of small parties in Jharkhand:
Smaller parties could make an impact on 6 seats – Koderma, Dhanbad, Ranchi, Singhbhum, Khunti and Hazaribagh -- in the state.
Likely vote impact percentage of small parties in Uttar Pradesh:
PECP is likely to make an impact on vote percentage in Shrawasti, Domariyaganj and Sant Kabir Nagar seats.
In Uttar Pradesh, BJP by forming alliances with Suheldev Bharatiya Sama Party (SBSP) and Apna Dal (S), it is challenging the SP-BSP-RLD combine. Leaders of SBSP, Apna Dal (S) have been taken care of by BJP by appointing them as head of various commissions, councils and corporations. These parties hae considerable vote bank that helps BJP to consolidate its position.
Likely vote impact percentage of small parties in Chhattisgarh:
Nano parties will take vote share and also seats: K Yatish Rajawat
On being asked whether voters will go back to their traditional voting pattern in the absence of any wave, Senior Journalist K Yatish Rajawat says small parties know they have a role to play in this elections, and expects nano parties to take away not only vote share but also seats, and it should be seen how caste votes move. He says winning margin will fall and these smaller parties are consolidating themselves and aligning with other parties to keep their vote share intact. He adds smaller parties are equally important as state parties.
BJP is happy to give space to alliances compared to Congress: Meetu Jain
Senior Journalist Meetu Jain says BJP compared with Congress is willing to accommodate alliances since it knows it needs these smaller parties to clinch some seats. Quoting Yashwant Sinha, she says Congress is fighting over seats with their prospective allies though they do not have them.
Likely vote impact percentage of small parties in Haryana:
BSP is likely to have its impact in 4 seats – Ambala, Kurukshetra, Karnal and Faridabad -- with their vote share.
BJP & Congress realise importance of nano parties: Bhawesh Jha
Bhawesh Jha, Director, CNX, says nano parties could make a big impact in Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra and both BJP and Congress have realized their importance, and also know that they cannot dent their vote base, but to move with them to get those extra numbers of seats.
Here are Lok Sabha seats impacted by smaller parties in the past elections, and the vote share they could impact in 2019:
What could be the final outcome from 69 seats and the seats projected for UPA and NDA?