The Recent By Election Shows Early Sign Of 2024 Election For BJP And Congress

Except for the Telangana Rashtra Samithi, all byelection parties appealed to Indian political dynasticism. In preparation for the 2024 Lok Sabha elections against the BJP, the opposition parties showed their strength in seven by-elections in six states. With a few exceptions, the results were predictable, assuring that legislatures would not alter.

BJP retaining Gopalganj (Bihar), Gola Gokrannath (Uttar Pradesh), Dhamnagar (Odisha), and Adampur (Haryana) from the Congress. The RJD retained Bihar’s Mokama constituency despite Anant Singh’s resignation for corruption. After Congress MLA Komatireddy Rajagopal Reddy defected to the BJP, the Munugode byelection was won by the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS). The saffron party’s candidate lost by more than 3 percentage points against the TRS as of publication.

Haryana and Telangana lost Congress seats to the BJP and TRS. After his party’s triumph in a contentious, polarising battle in Haryana, K. Chandrashekar Rao (KCR), who has been campaigning against the BJP nationally, will likely up his ante. The saffron party’s loss in Telangana may limit its southern state expansion. The TRS lost two state BJP by-elections before this loss. The BJP currently controls only Karnataka.

Except for the TRS, all byelection parties appealed to dynasticism in Indian politics. The BJP fielded relatives of deceased or defected MLAs in by-elections.
After Kuldeep Bishnoi moved parties from the Congress to the BJP, prompting Adampur byelections, the BJP nominated his son Bhavya.

It supported Aman Giri, the son of late BJP member Arvind Giri, who won the Gola Gokrannath seat for the sixth time in 2017 but died earlier this year. Dhamnagar’s saffron party trusted Suryabanshi Suraj after his father, current MLA Bishnu Charam Sethi, died. In Gopalganj, the BJP again ran Kusum Devi, the widow of Bihar state legislator Subhash Singh.

Others employed the same playbook. Mokama RJD candidate Neelam Devi was Anant Singh’s wife. After Ramesh Latke died, Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray selected his daughter Rutuja Latke to represent the party in Andheri East.
Dynasty politics is common in byelections since most parties bank on voters’ sympathies when an MLA dies mid-term. The BJP’s leadership has fought “parivarvaad” for a decade. These by-elections support the idea that the saffron party will compromise to better its political prospects.

The Congress would need to consider other ways to boost its election chances beyond the Bharat Jodo Yatra and a non-Gandhi party president.
It will be a wake-up call for Nitish Kumar and Lalu Prasad Yadav, whose parties JD(U) and RJD, and Bihar’s deputy CM Tejashwi, focused everything they had on gaining back the Gopalganj seat from the BJP.

Leaders from both parties predicted that the BJP would be cornered if all OBC segments in the state were consolidated like they were in the 2015 Bihar assembly elections. Despite significant opposition from the majority coalition, the saffron party triumphed.

Even without Nitish Kumar’s support, the BJP remains a serious opponent of the state’s ruling alliance. Even in Mokama, where it lost, the BJP gave the Mahagathbandhan candidate a tough fight, as the RJD candidate’s victory margin was cut by almost 50% from the previous election. Asaduddin Owaisi’s AIMIM received seven per cent, while the RJD lost slightly over one per cent. Muslim voters may have been split. The Bahujan Samaj Party’s large vote total may have contributed to voter splintering.

The Biju Janata Dal (BJD) may regard their loss in Dhamnagar as an indication of fading support in Odisha due to BJP growth. Before the election, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik abolished all temporary government positions and proposed making them permanent. The pronouncement was regarded as a message to state voters ahead of the 2024 general election and was cited as a crucial factor in the bypoll, but the BJP held on to the seat, demonstrating that the party is still considered the best alternative to the BJD.