Was a caste coalition alone responsible for BJP's defeat in UP bypolls?

Yogi Adityanath
Was a caste coalition alone responsible for the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP’s) defeat in Phulpur and Gorakhpur?

Certainly, it was a big factor. 

But maybe a contributing factor was also the way the electorate reacted to the performance of  Yogi Adityanath and K P Maurya as their representatives in the Lok Sabha.

Adityanath and Maurya campaigned for the UP polls at the beginning of 2017, while took up the posts of the chief and the deputy chief minister, respectively, in March 2017. But they relinquished their Lok Sabha seats only in September 2017. For about six months, they were both MPs and chief/deputy CMs.

Put in charge of running India's biggest state, Adityanath and Maurya must have got less time to look after the demands of people in their parliamentary constituencies. 

The accompanying charts tell the story. Adityanath asked the government 89 questions in 2014. This fell to 31 questions in 2017 – when he campaigned for the state elections. Similarly, Maurya’s attendance in the Lok Sabha was 100 per cent in 2014. But it dipped to 27 per cent in 2017.

Maybe one of the lessons for MPs is – if you want to be re-elected, ensure your parliamentary performance is adequate. This is all the more relevant given that Parliament hasn’t transacted any business for the last 14 days!

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