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Pepped Up by Lok Sabha Results, Manohar Lal Khattar's 'Repeat Mandate' Strategy May Send Jitters to Haryana's One-time Giants

File photo of Haryana CM Manohar Lal Khattar. (PTI)

File photo of Haryana CM Manohar Lal Khattar. (PTI)

Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar said that the assembly elections will be held on time and will either be in September or October.

Chandigarh: After painting the entire Haryana saffron for the first time, chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar has assured that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) would repeat mandate in the assembly elections, likely to be held in September or October this year.

"We won’t stop at 83. We will work hard to go beyond 83. I am confident that we will score an even stronger majority in the upcoming polls," he said in Delhi, adding that the assembly elections will be held on time and will either be in September or October.

The BJP has won all the 10 seats in the state with two of its candidates emerging among the top three candidates with highest victory margins of over six lakh votes.

The party has almost doubled its vote percentage in the state from the last Lok Sabha polls. In 2014, the saffron party had scored 34.84 per cent votes winning seven seats, and this time the vote share has jumped to 58.02 per cent.​

What is even more gratifying for chief minister Manohar Lal, is that the party has secured a lead in 83 of the 90 assembly segments in the state, and that too just three months before the state polls.

Interestingly, the Congress, which has drawn a blank, too, has witnessed an increase in its vote share. In 2014, it had won the sole Rohtak seat with a total vote percentage of 22.99. In 2019, the Congress vote share increased to 28.42%.

The gain of BJP and the Congress has translated into the loss for the INLD. The party which was seen as a front-runner in government formation a year ago, is today in the shambles. The INLD has lost its base in the Lok Sabha 2019 polls with its vote share dipping drastically to 1.89 per cent from 24.43 per cent five years ago when it had won two seats.

After the split last year, it was expected that the splinter Jannayak Janata Party (JJP) of outgoing Hisar MP Dushyant Chautala would grab a major share of the INLD pie. But it hasn’t been so. The seven seats on which the JJP fielded its candidates garnered a mere 7.32 votes with all its candidates, but Dushyant, forfeiting their security deposits. The story has been same with all the INLD candidates.

JJP’s alliance partner Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) which fought on 3 LS seats, just managed a 0.36 per cent vote share. It was just an iota above the NOTA which stood at 0.33 per cent.

The BSP also registered a drop in its votes share this time. It secured a mere 3.64 per cent votes, one per cent less than the 4.60 per cent it secured in 2014.

The BJP this time seems to have turned all the caste equations in the state into its favour. While it has further cemented its non-Jat base, the Jat voters too have taken sides with CM Manohar Lal, a major worry for Jat-oriented parties like the Congress and the INLD ahead of the 2019 Haryana Assembly polls.

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