Overall loss but private win for Vasundhara Raje

Raje's victory over Congress' Manvendra Singh by 34,980 votes is her fourth consecutive win in the seat

The BJP under Vasundhara Raje may have failed to make history by beating anti-incumbency in Rajasthan, but she has managed to set a record in her home seat of Jhalrapatan.

Her victory over Congress' Manvendra Singh by 34,980 votes is her fourth consecutive win in the seat.

Singh had jumped ship from the BJP just weeks before he was fielded against the chief minister.

However, Raje's victory margin has come down from the 2013 polls when she defeated Congress' Meenakshi Chandrawat by over 60,000 votes.

"Raje may have won from Jhalrapatan but Manvendra had dented her popularity and it is visible from the figures. This time she won by 35,000 votes but the 2013 margin was the double of this", a senior congress leader told DH.

It was from Jhalrapatan that she had contested the 2003 elections, when she was made the first chief minister of the state.

Jhalrapatan was always a BJP stronghold, where it has always won except for the 1985 and 1998 elections.

Jhalrapatan has a total of 2.73 lakh voters, of which 1.33 lakh are female voters. This time, Jhalrapatan had recorded a voter turn out of 77.84% against 79.12% in 2013.

Raje had proved strong enough to get the Rajasthan BJP president of her choice, and even after the exit polls predicted that the BJP will lose in Rajasthan under her leadership, she managed to get most of her MLAs repeated.

But the road wasn't entirely smooth for her and the party. The BJP was battling not just anti-incumbency but also disgruntled party workers and communities.

The protest at the prime minister's rally in Jhunjhunu in March was wake up call for her.

The slogan that was heard raised there was: "Modi tujhse bair nahin, Vasundhara teri khair nahin" (We don't hold anything against you, Modi, but Vasundhara, beware of us).

Considering this a wake-up call, she conducted a 40-day-long 'Gaurav Yatra' across the state to connect with voters but her yatra had to face protests.

Tuesday's results, apart from being the semi-finals for the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, can also decide Raje's own future in the BJP and Rajasthan.

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Overall loss but private win for Vasundhara Raje

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