Lok Sabha polls 2024: Congress shrugs off loser tag in straight fights against BJP

Fifty-one of the 99 seats the Congress won were in direct fight between the principal rivals this time.
hemin Joy
Last Updated : 05 June 2024, 09:12 IST
Last Updated : 05 June 2024, 09:12 IST

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New Delhi: Allies have always lampooned the Congress for its dismal performance against the BJP in direct fight till now but this time, the grand old party made a dramatic increase on this count with more than half of its seats coming in one-on-one fights with the saffron party.

Fifty-one of the 99 seats the Congress won were in direct fight between the principal rivals this time as against 15 of the 52 five years ago. BJP won in 157 seats in a direct fight against the Congress this time.

However, the Congress has not managed to open its account in Andaman Nicobar and Madhya Pradesh where it had one seat each last time while it continued to remain without an MP for another term in Delhi, Tripura, Uttarakhand, and Himachal Pradesh where it took on BJP.

On the positive, Congress had an impressive performance in Maharashtra, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh where it had entered into alliance with various partners. It too had surprises in Gujarat and Manipur in direct fights.

“This performance is going to boost the self-confidence of Congress in Hindi heartland though there were some setbacks in states like Karnataka. In the last ten years, it did not see an increase in vote-share and this time it has happened. This will have an impact in Haryana and Maharashtra elections,” political analyst Rasheed Kidwai told DH.

In Rajasthan where it drew a blank since 2014, the Congress won eight seats defeating the candidates of BJP, which defeated the grand old party only months ago in Assembly polls.

Maharashtra, where the alliance involving Congress was ousted following defections in NCP and Shiv Sena, also brought huge cheers as the party won altogether 13 of the 17 seats it contested. Of this, Congress squared off with BJP in 15 seats and won 11 out of them. In 2019, Congress won just a seat.

“The performance in Maharashtra is more significant. One has to note that Congress did not have a tall leader like Uddhav Thackeray or Sharad Pawar. It had lost a leader like Ashok Chavan to the BJP. Despite that it has performed well and emerged the topper in the state,” Kidwai said. Congress managed to win Chavan’s stronghold Nanded defeating the BJP nominee.

A carefully crafted campaign around the Constitution and retaining quota regime along with the social justice agenda helped Congress bag six seats, including wresting Amethi, against BJP’s 11. Last time, it won only Rae Bareli seat.

In Assam, it could win two seats in its fight against BJP, which defeated it in eight. Of the nine contested in Bihar, Congress won three seats and two of them were in direct contest against the BJP, which defeated Congress in four seats.

Chhattisgarh saw Congress being reduced to one from two with BJP winning the rest ten while in Jharkhand, the party won two against the saffron party.

Lok Sabha Election 2024 results | Check all constituency results here

Odisha Assembly poll 2024 results| Check constituency results here

Andhra Pradesh Assembly poll 2024 results | Check constituency results here

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Published 05 June 2024, 09:12 IST

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