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Understanding the Defeat of the BSP in Uttar Pradesh: National Election 2014


  • Sudha Pai

    (Sudha Pai, Centre for Political Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India. E-mail:


The failure of the Bahujan Samaj Party to win a single Lok Sabha seat from Uttar Pradesh in the 2014 general elections, the only state in India, where the party had earlier secured power, came as a shocking surprise to many. Most analyses of the results claimed that the party lost because its core support base among the Dalits, and particularly, among the Jatav community, had drifted away from it. The article argues that while it is true that support to the Bahujan Samaj Party from its core constituency has shrunk in the 2014 elections, the party has managed to secure the allegiance of a majority of the Jatavs, as also the Dalits. It further points out that the defeat of the Bahujan Samaj Party was largely due to its failure to retain the support of those communities, other than the Dalits, who had extended substantial support to it in the past, as well as due to the Bharatiya Janata Party’s campaign strategy.

Suggested Citation

  • Sudha Pai, 2014. "Understanding the Defeat of the BSP in Uttar Pradesh: National Election 2014," Studies in Indian Politics, , vol. 2(2), pages 153-167, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:indpol:v:2:y:2014:i:2:p:153-167

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