15 to 20 Seats: Data Scientist Predicts BJP’s Tally in Uttar Pradesh
The party had won 73 out of the 80 seats in the state in the 2014 election.
Data scientist and co founder of Anthro.ai, Narendra Nag, has presented an analysis titled “The Undercurrent Is An Earthquake” that suggests a massive anti-Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) wave in Uttar Pradesh in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.
While the BJP won 73 seats and a 41 per cent vote share in the 2014 election, the numbers are expected to be much lower — between 15 to 20 seats — in this election. The vote share is expected to drop by 3 to 5 per cent. The analysis acknowledges that there is a slim chance that the BJP will win 30 seats “but we think that’s unlikely now and expect them to trend closer to the lower end of this range.”
At the same time, the Samajwadi Party – Bahujan Samaj Party alliance is expected “to win between 40 and 55 seats, likely closer to 55 than 40.” The Congress party is likely to win between 5 and 9 seats.
Factors contributing to the saffron party’s loss are manifold. Even though the BJP may have managed to add new supporters, the article notes that the party has “lost more than they’ve gained”.
“In the run-up to 2014, Amit Shah moved quickly to capitalise on years of work by the BJP wooing non-Yadav OBCs and non-Jatav Dalits in Uttar Pradesh,” by appointing office-bearers from these communities. However, these gains were undone by centralisation of power by the Modi government which has led to people perceiving that their MPs have no real power. This was exacerbated by last minute announcement of candidates for the 2019 polls, and the rise of Yogi Adityanath — a Thakur — as the state’s chief minister.
“Throughout the period of our study we keep pickup up rising resentment against the perception that Thakurs have too much influence. True or not, it’s also ended up impacting sections of the Brahmin vote,” Nag writes.
Additionally, Kurmis and Kushwahas, who had voted for the BJP in the last election, appear to have voted in favour of the SB-BSP alliance, considering the large voter turnout. “And there’s a minor revolt brewing in the Nishad community as well.”
The failure to deliver on the Ram Mandir issue in Ayodhya is also cited as reasons behind the BJP’s downfall in the state.
Women voters are also expected to play a massive role in deciding the fate of the parties. On this front, policies like demonetisation have impacted the BJP adversely. Stray cattle menace has also contributed to the resentment. “And well marketed, but poorly executed schemes, have only added to a growing anger amongst women — who’ve stayed quiet,” the analysis notes.
Anthro.ai is a “is a collection of anthropologists, mathematicians, data-scientists and market specialists building ethical, machine-based systems and maps to navigate complex human landscapes.”