2018 elections in India
Elections in the Republic of India in 2018 include by-elections to the Lok Sabha, elections to the Rajya Sabha, elections to legislative assemblies of eight states and numerous other by-elections to state legislative assemblies, councils and local bodies.
The elections are widely considered crucial to the ruling National Democratic Alliance and the opposition United Progressive Alliance in lieu of the upcoming general elections in 2019. In seven of the eight states that go to polls this year, the Bharatiya Janata Party is in direct contest with the Indian National Congress. Further, the election results . in the states of Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan are considered a barometer of the pulse of the public before the general elections. Elections to the upper house where the ruling National Democratic Alliance does not command a majority are expected to strengthen its position.
- 1 Background
- 2 Parliament of India
- 3 State Legislatures
- 4 State Assembly Bypolls
- 5 See also
- 6 References
- 7 External links
According to the Constitution of India, elections should take place to the parliament and state legislative assemblies every five years, unless an emergency is under operation. Further, any vacancy caused by death or resignation must be filled through an election within six months of occurrence of such vacancy. The elections to the lower houses (in Parliament and in the states) use first past the post system - the candidate with a plurality of the votes wins the election.
Elections to one-third of the seats of the upper house of the Parliament - the Rajya Sabha are conducted every two years. The members of the upper house are elected indirectly by the state legislative assemblies on the basis of proportional representation. Members to the state legislative councils (in states which have an upper house) are elected indirectly through local bodies.
Naga Peace Process
Elections are scheduled to take place in the state of Nagaland, which has a long running insurgency against the Indian state. The Nagaland peace accord signed by the Government of India and a faction of the National Socialist Council of Nagaland is a major factor in the elections. The insurgent groups have threatened to disrupt the state elections unless a permanent solution is found to the conflict. However, negotiations between the insurgent groups and the government with a commitment that the elections will not have any bearing upon the peace process pacified the insurgents and elections are being held without any disruption.
Parliament of India
By-elections to the Lok Sabha
- Alwar (Lok Sabha constituency): Elections were held on 29 January to elect a new member of parliament after the death of the incumbent Mahant Chandnath of the Bharatiya Janata Party. Both the Bharatiya Janata Party and Indian National Congress fielded candidates from the yadav community. 61.77% of the total 18,27,936 voters participated in the election. For the first time in the country, election commission has placed candidates' photos next to their name to help voters identify the candidates. In what was seen as a body blow to the state government, the INC wrested control of the seat from the BJP, with its candidate Karan Singh Yadav winning the seat by a margin of 1,96,496 votes.
- Ajmer (Lok Sabha constituency): Elections were held on 29 January to elect a new member of parliament after the death of the incumbent Sanwar Lal Jat of the Bharatiya Janata Party. 65% of the total 18.43 lakh voters participated in the election. For the first time in the country, the election commission has placed candidates' photos next to their name to help voters identify the candidates. In what was seen as a body blow to the state government, the INC wrested control of the seat from the BJP, its candidate Raghu Sharma won by a margin of 84,238 votes.
- Uluberia (Lok Sabha constituency): Elections were held on 29 January to elect a new member of parliament after the death of Mohammedan Sporting Club's president and All India Trinamool Congress M.P Sultan Ahmed. Trinamool Congress candidate Sajda Ahmed won Uluberia Lok Sabha seat by defeating BJP candidate Anupam Mallick by 4,74,023 votes.
- Gorakhpur (Lok Sabha constituency): Elections were held on March 11 to elect a new member of Parliament after the incumbent member Yogi Adityanath resigned from the post after he was appointed the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh. The Samajwadi Party candidate Pravin Kumar Nishad (belonging to the NISHAD Party but contesting on SP ticket) won the election with 4,56,513 votes in favour, defeating the Bharatiya Janata Party candidate Upendra Dutt Shukla. The results are widely seen as a personal blow to the popularity of Yogi Adityanath.
- Phulpur (Lok Sabha constituency): Elections were held on March 14 to elect a new member of Parliament after the incumbent member Keshav Prasad Maurya resigned from the post after he was appointed the Deputy Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh. The Samajwadi Party candidate Nagendra Pratap Singh Patel won the election with 3,42,922 votes in favour, defeating the BJP candidate Kaushalendra Singh Patel.
- Araria (Lok Sabha constituency): Elections were held on March 11, 2018. Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) retained the seat.
4 parliamentary seats will be contested on 28 May. The counting of votes took place on May 31. This election saw the ruling BJP party lose their majority in the lower house of the Indian Parliament
|2018 Winner||2014 Winner||State||Constituency||Note|
|RLD||BJP||Uttar Pradesh||Kairana||The constituency fell vacant after the death of BJP MP Hukum Singh.|
|NCP||BJP||Maharashtra||Bhandara-Gondiya||Nana Patole quit as the BJP MP and resigned from the ruling party to return to the Congress earlier this year, necessitating the by-election.|
|BJP||BJP||Maharashtra||Palghar||Palghar seat in north Konkan fell vacant after sitting BJP MP Chintaman Vanga died on 30 January following a heart attack.|
|NDPP||NPF||Nagaland||Nagaland||The by-election was necessitated after NDPP's Neiphiu Rio resigned to take on the role of Nagaland chief minister.|
Elections to the Rajya Sabha
- Elections to 59 Rajya Sabha seats held on March 23. The results declared on the same day. The Bhartiya Janta Party consolidated its position as the largest party in the Rajya Sabha by winning 28 of the 58 seats in the House. With these results, the BJP-led NDA now has 87 seats in the 245- seat Rajya Sabha compared to the 57 seats of the Congress-led UPA. Other smaller parties together account for the remaining 100 seats.
|Date||State||Government before||Government after||Elected leader|
|18 February 2018||Tripura||Communist Party of India (Marxist) (CPM)||Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)||Biplab Kumar Deb|
|27 February 2018||Meghalaya||Indian National Congress (INC)||National People's Party (India) (NPP)||Conrad Sangma|
|United Democratic Party (UDP)||United Democratic Party (UDP)|
|27 February 2018||Nagaland||Naga People's Front (NPF)||Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP)||Neiphiu Rio|
|Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)|
|12 May 2018||Karnataka||Indian National Congress (INC)||Janata Dal (Secular) (JD(S))||H. D. Kumaraswamy|
|Indian National Congress (INC)|
|No later than 18 December 2018||Mizoram||Indian National Congress (INC)|
|No later than 5 January 2019||Chhattisgarh||Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)|
|No later than 7 January 2019||Madhya Pradesh||Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)|
|No later than 20 January 2019||Rajasthan||Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)|
|Assembly Dissolved by Governor||Telangana||Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS)|
Elections were held in Tripura on 18 February 2018 in 59 out of 60 constituencies of the Legislative Assembly. The Left Front led by Manik Sarkar sought re-election, having governed Tripura since the 1998 election. The region in general had been under the political control of the Communist Party for 25 years prior to the election, leading to the region being dubbed a "red holdout". The incumbent Left Front government was defeated after 25 years of office, with the Bharatiya Janata Party and Indigenous Peoples Front of Tripura winning a large majority of seats. The Indian National Congress, which was the second largest party in the 2013 election, lost all its seats and most of its vote share.
|Parties and coalitions||Popular vote||Seats|
|Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)||999,093||43.0||36||36|
|Communist Party of India (Marxist) (CPM)||992,575||42.7||16||33|
|Indigenous Peoples Front of Tripura (IPFT)||173,603||7.5||8||8|
|Indian National Congress (INC)||41,325||1.8||0||10|
|Communist Party of India (CPI)||19,352||0.8||0||1|
|Revolutionary Socialist Party (RSP)||17,568||0.8||0|
|Indigenous Nationalist Party of Twipra (INPT)||16,255||0.7||0|
|All India Forward Bloc (AIFB)||13,115||0.6||0|
|All India Trinamool Congress (AITC)||6,989||0.3||0|
|Other parties and coalitions||0|
|None of the Above (NOTA)|
Elections were held in Meghalaya on 27 February 2018 to elect 59 of 60 members to the Legislative Assembly. The incumbent Indian National Congress government controlled the state in a coalition with smaller parties prior to the election, and sought to retain office. The elections resulted in a hung assembly with no single party or alliance getting the requisite majority of 31 seats in the Vidhan Sabha. Conrad Sangma, leader of the National People's Party, announced that he would form a government with the support of the United Democratic Party and other regional parties. He was sworn in as the Chief Minister, along with eleven other ministers.
|Indian National Congress (INC)||447,472||28.5||59||21||8|
|National People's Party (NPP)||323,500||20.6||52||19||17|
|United Democratic Party (UDP)||182,491||11.6||27||6||2|
|Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)||151,217||9.6||47||2||2|
|People's Democratic Front (PDF)||128,413||8.2||8||4||4|
|Hill State People's Democratic Party (HSPDP)||84,011||5.3||15||2||1|
|Nationalist Congress Party (NCP)||25,247||1.6||6||1||1|
|Garo National Council (GNC)||21,679||1.4||7||0||1|
|Khun Hynniewtrep National Awakening Movement (KHNAM)||14,164||0.9||6||1||1|
|All India Trinamool Congress (AITC)||5,544||0.4||0|
|None of the Above (NOTA)||14,631||0.9|
Elections were held in Nagaland on 27 February 2018 in 59 out of 60 constituencies of the Legislative Assembly. The scheduled election in Northern Angami II constituency did not take place as only incumbent MLA Neiphiu Rio was nominated and was therefore declared elected unopposed. The ruling Naga People's Front was challenged by the newly established Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP), an ally of the Bharatiya Janata Party. The NDPP and its allies won a majority, with former Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio returning to government.
|Parties and coalitions||Popular vote||Seats|
|Nagaland People's Front (NPF)||389,912||38.8||58||26||12|
|Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP)||253,090||25.2||40||18||18|
|Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)||153,864||15.3||20||12||11|
|National People's Party (NPP)||69,506||6.9||25||2||2|
|Janata Dal (United) (JD(U))||45,089||4.5||13||1|
|Indian National Congress (INC)||20,752||2.1||18||0||8|
|Nationalist Congress Party (NCP)||10,693||1.1||6||0||4|
|Aam Aadmi Party (AAP)||7,491||0.7||3||0|
|Lok Janshakti Party (LJP)||2,765||0.3||2||0|
|None of the Above (NOTA)|
Elections were held in Karnataka on 12 May 2018 in 222 out of 224 constituencies of the Legislative Assembly. The incumbent Indian National Congress (INC) was seeking re-election, having governed the state since elections in 2013. The opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Janata Dal (Secular) (JD(S)) sought to regain office. The election led to a hung assembly, with the Bharatiya Janata Party emerging as the single largest party, with 104 seats, but failing to win a majority of seats and popular votes. The Indian National Congress (INC) won the popular vote. Following the election, B. S. Yeddyurappa was appointed Chief Minister and tasked with forming a minority BJP government, but resigned two days later on being unable to prove majority in the assembly. Thereafter the INC and JD(S) which had entered into a post-poll agreement formed a majority coalition government. H.D. Kumaraswamy of Janata Dal (Secular) was subsequently appointed Chief Minister.
|Parties and coalitions||Popular vote||Seats|
|Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)||1,31,85,384||36.2||16.3||104||64|
|Indian National Congress (INC)||1,49,32,069||38.0||1.4||80||44|
|Janata Dal (Secular) (JDS)||66,66,307||18.3||1.9||37||3|
|Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP)||1,08,592||0.3||1||1|
|Karnataka Pragnyavantha Janatha Party (KPJP)||74,229||0.2||1||1|
|Other parties and candidates||6,83,632||2.2||0||13|
|None of the Above (NOTA)||3,22,841||0.9|
Elections will be held in the states of Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Mizoram, Rajasthan and Telangana in late 2018.
State Assembly Bypolls
10 assembly seats across 9 different states held bypolls on 28 May 2018. The results of each bypoll were declared on 31 May.
Followed the demise of BJP MLA Lokendra Singh Chauhan in a road accident, the Noorpur seat fell vacant. Besides the Kairana Lok Sabha constituency, Noorpur is another assembly seat in which the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) fought with the Samajwadi Party (SP). Mayawati's Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) didn't participate in the bypolls, and it is still clear that the BSP will lend support to SP. SP Candidate won the seat.
Shahkot constituency in Punjab fell vacant when the sitting Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) MLA Ajit Singh Kohar died of heart failure in February 2018. The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), which had emerged as the runners-up to Congress in 2017, campaigned aggressively for its candidate Rattan Singh Kakkarkalan.
The AAP campaign, led by AAP MP Bhagwant Mann, was said to have received a lukewarm response. The AAP suffered many a setback in the state after Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal tendered an apology to Akali leader Bikram Singh Majithia. Some of the state leaders were disappointed with Kejriwal's decision and switched to either AAP or Congress.
In what is being seen by many as a test of Nitish Kumar's popularity in the state after he walked away from the mahagathbandhan in 2017, the chief minister and half of his cabinet campaigned for Janata Dal United's (JDU) candidate Murshid Alam. Alam has seven criminal cases, including a gangrape case, against him.
JD(U) legislator Sarfaraz Alam had quit the party after Nitish decided to part ways with Lalu's Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), necessitating a by-election to the assembly seat.Later, he became the MP from Araria lok sabha constituency in Bihar through the bypoll held in March 2018.
Two assembly seats, Gomia and Silli, in Jharkhand went to polls on 28 May. In Gomia, the ruling National Democratic Alliance partners – the BJP and the All Jharkhand Students Union (AJSU) fought separately.
In Silli, there was a direct fight between Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) candidate Seema Mahto and AJSU president Sudesh Mahto. Seema Mahto is the wife of Amit Mahto, who lost his assembly seat after being convicted and awarded a jail term.
Sitting CPI(M) MLA KK Ramachandran Nair's demise necessitated the by-election to the Kerala constituency. Even though a result against the CPI(M)-led Left government will not change the composition of the assembly, the bypoll is being seen as a test of the Pinarayi Vijayan-led government’s two years in power.
Indian National Congress (INC), the main opposition party of Kerala, claims that the mandate will be against the performances of state and central governments.
Chengannur is one of the constituencies in Kerala, where National Democratic Alliance (NDA) got a vote share near 30% in 2016 vidhan sabha elections.Through the bypoll, we can know the present attitude of Keralites towards the central-ruling party.
Out of the whole bypoll constituencies, the highest poll percentage was recorded in Chengannur-76.27%.
Congress nominee Vishwakeet Kadam's election from Palus-Kadegaon Assembly seat in the by-poll scheduled later this month is a mere formality as the main rival BJP has withdrawn from the race. The by-poll, scheduled on 28 May, was necessitated because of the death of sitting Congress MLA and former minister Patangrao Kadam.
The Congress had fielded his son Vishwajeet Kadam from the seat.
Uttarakhand's Tharali seat fell vacant after BJP MLA Maganlal Shah succumbed to swine flu in February 2018. Uttarakhand had voted the BJP to power in the assembly election in 2017.
In West Bengal's South 24 Parganas district, the Maheshtala seat fell vacant after the two-time All India Trinamool Congress (TMC) MLA Kasturi Das dies in February 2018. The Congress extended support to CPI(M) candidate for the 28 May by-poll to Maheshtala Assembly seat in West Bengal, sparking speculation that the two parties might be coming closer to each other. The two parties had forged a coalition in Bengal for the 2016 assembly elections but parted ways after the CPI(M) central committee said the alliance was “not in consonance with the party line adopted in 2015”.
|Noorpur||Uttar Pradesh||Naimul Hasan||SP||6211||BJP|
|Shahkot||Punjab||Hardev Singh Ladi||Cong||38801||SAD|
|Palus-Kadegaon||Maharashtra||Kadam Viswajeet Patangrao||Cong||No opposition||BJP|
|Ampati||Meghalaya||Miani D Shira||Cong||3191||BJP|
|Tharali||Uttarakhand||Munni Devi Shah||BJP||1981||Cong|
|Maheshtala||West Bengal||Dulal Chandra das||AITC||62827||BJP|
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