Saffron juggernaut relegates regional parties to sidelines

TMC, which had scored 34 seats during the 2014 Modi wave, was reduced to 22 after Thursday’s results.

Published: 24th May 2019 08:05 AM  |   Last Updated: 24th May 2019 08:05 AM   |  A+A-

BJP supporters celebrate outside party headquarters ( Photo | Shekhar yadav)

By Express News Service

NEW DELHI: The gigantic saffron wave that swept through the country on Thursday smashed the hopes of many regional parties, which tried to punch above their weight. Most of the aspiring parties — NCP, BSP, SP, JD(S), AAP, AIADMK and TDP — have now been reduced to single digits in the Lok Sabha.
West Bengal’s Trinamool Congress led by Mamata Banerjee, who was eyeing the PM’s post, suffered a big blow as the BJP made deep inroads into her territory. TMC, which had scored 34 seats during the 2014 Modi wave, was reduced to 22 after Thursday’s results.

Similarly, after winning four seats in 2014, the RJD had showcased a remarkable performance in the 2015 Bihar Assembly polls under the leadership of Tejashwi Yadav. However, RJD could not carry the streak forward as the party, along with allies Congress and RLSP, lost most of the seats in the 2019 polls. The RJD failed to win even a single seat when Thursday’s results were announced, making it the worst-ever drubbing since its formation three decades ago.
Similarly, the JD(S) had come to the limelight in 2018, when it stitched an alliance with the Congress in the wake of the fractured mandate in the Karnataka Assembly polls. In the 2019 polls that concluded on Thursday, it was reduced to just one seat in the LS.
Sharad Pawar-led NCP, which was also considering itself as one of the kingmakers, is facing similar crisis.

The party, which had presence on six seats in 2014, could win only four seats this time.
Shibu Soren-led Jharkhand Mukti Morcha won just one seat, against two seats in 2014. The party suffered a major blow with even Soren losing his seat in the tribal state.
The TRS, which was expecting a hung parliament and aspiring to play a key role in putting together a third front, was reduced to eight seats. The party had scored an impressive win in the last state polls, but it  could not repeat the performance in the LS elections.

AIADMK is another big loser, as its tally came down to just one on Thursday, from a remarkable 37 seats in 2014 polls. The only saving grace for the party is that it is part of the NDA.
Arvind Kejriwal-led AAP repeated its 2014 performance this time as well, scoring zero.
Ditto with the Left parties, which registered its worst poll performance in six decades. Kerala’s ruling party CPI(M) had won nine seats in 2014. But it lost 19 out of 20 seats in the state this time around.

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