Highlights

  • Congress has maintained traditional vote share
  • Rural outreach of INC strong
  • Congress faces 27 year incumbent BJP

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Gujarat Elections 2022: Where does Congress stand in upcoming elections?

After losing Punjab to AAP, Congress’ ruling power has been reduced to just Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh making it desperate for a win in Gujarat’s assembly elections.  

It has been a long 27 years since the Congress held power in Gujarat. The grand old party has lost six elections in a row to the BJP since 1995.

With seasoned leader Mallikarjun Kharge at the helm of affairs now, Congress hopes to regain past glory. Five years ago, Congress came close and won 77 of 182 seats giving a tough fight to the BJP, which bagged 99 seats.

After losing Punjab to AAP, Congress’ ruling power has been reduced to just Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh making it desperate for a win in Gujarat’s assembly elections.

Here is a quick overview of the strength, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats of the Congress on the home turf of the country’s prime minister and home minister.

Despite six losses in a row, Congress has maintained 40% vote share. OBCs, SCs, STs and Muslims are its traditional voter base. It will be a tough fight for BJP if Congress wins support of Kshatriya, Harijan, Adivasi, Muslim (KHAM) and disgruntled Patel community.

The KHAM formula devised by former Guarat CM Madhavsinh Solanki has been fruitful for Congress in past.

Congress lacks strong leaders at the state level and what makes matters worse for it is the factionalism in the state unit. Exponentially adding to it is the exodus of state leaders in the past 10 years.

Also Watch| Amid a triangular conundrum, how BJP is placed this time | Gujarat Elections 2022

Patidar leader Hardik Patel and 16 Congress MLAs joined BJP between 2017-2022. The party has been unable to win 66 urban, semi-urban seats in past 30 years. This election it is without concrete support due to the focus on Bharat Jodo Yatra

Congress’ biggest opportunity this election is that BJP faces 27 years of anti-incumbency and add to it BJP’s gradual loss of seats in each assembly election since 2002.

Leaders of the party feel that Arvind Kejriwal's party will damage the urban vote bank of the BJP more than the rural vote bank of the Congress.

But the BJP comes with the 'Modi factor' that can give it an edge once again over rival parties. Another threat that looms over Congress is a vigorous attempt by the AAP and AIMIM to eat into the support base of the Congress. And if it does end up losing once more, the chances of more people leaving the Congress are more likely.

The Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh elections will also be the first major test for new Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge.

Gujarat Election 2022 Voting Live Updates

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