Opinion: The Electoral Math Of INDIA vs NDA

The competition for 2024 is heating up because the Congress and the BJP each finalising their alliances. A 26-party consortium named “INDIA” is about to compete with a 38-party NDA, providing voters an possibility they did not have in 2019. The presence of the Congress in “INDIA” lends stability to the opposition alliance, and the reassures voters that, given an opportunity, they’ll full a full five-year time period.

What Does The Math Look Like?

The UPA, in its earlier avatar in 2019, bagged 91 seats with a 27% vote share. The rebranded INDIA has 144 MPs within the 545-member Lok Sabha with a 37.5% vote share. However, the NDA received 353 seats with a forty five% vote share. Modifications just like the exit of the Janata Dal (United) and Uddhav Thackeray’s Shiv Sena, and the entry of Ajit Pawar’s NCP faction, carry down that tally to 332 seats with a 42.9% vote share. The mammoth 18% lead loved by the NDA shrinks.

Class of Contests in 2024

There are 4 classes of contests doubtless in 2024, based mostly on the 2019 numbers. In 375 seats, the BJP is prone to be in rivalry, whereas the Congress can be within the sport in 261 seats. Regional events, whether or not within the INDIA alliance or the NDA, are prone to be in rivalry in 353 seats.


Class 1 (BJP vs Congress)

The BJP and Congress locked horns in 190 seats in 2019. The BJP received 175 whereas the Congress, 17. The BJP recorded a lead of greater than 20% when it comes to vote share in these seats. The social gathering that ranked third received, on common, only a 4% vote share, implying these have been primarily BJP versus Congress contests with restricted function of regional events in states like Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi, Goa, Karnataka, Assam, Haryana, and elements of Maharashtra.

The Congress social gathering’s alliances are unlikely to bear fruits there and it’s largely by itself. Its allies in INDIA, just like the Samajwadi Get together, Trinamool Congress, and the Left events have restricted presence there. Nonetheless, the third ranked social gathering secured extra votes than the margin of victory in 19 seats, and 13 have been received by the BJP.


Class 2 (BJP vs Regional Events)

The BJP and regional events contested on 185 seats in 2019, the BJP received 128 whereas regional events 57. The BJP had a lead of seven% in vote share phrases on these seats. The social gathering that ranked third received an identical vote share, indicating that alliances may very well be a sport changer there, primarily in Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Odisha, elements of Bihar and Maharashtra.


The Congress social gathering was ranked third on 88 seats right here. The quantity three social gathering secured extra votes than the margin of victory in 55 seats, and 30 of them have been received by the BJP.

Class 3 (Congress vs Regional Events)

The Congress and regional events contested 71 seats in 2019. The Congress received 37 whereas regional events 34. When it comes to vote share, it was neck-and-neck with each securing 41% every. The social gathering ranked third recorded an nearly 12% vote share, spoiling the probabilities of the runner-up.

In these states like Telangana, Punjab, elements of Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Bihar and so on. there may be restricted good thing about alliances, or they’re already in place, or they’re tough to forge. The third ranked social gathering secured extra votes than the margin of victory in 32 seats, and 21 of them have been received by the Congress.

Class 4 (Regional vs Regional)

Regional events contested in opposition to one another in 97 seats in 2019. In 59 of them, it was a UPA versus NDA contest. The distinction in vote shares between the winner and runner-up was 15%, with the third social gathering securing simply 7% vote share. The Congress and the BJP have been third on solely 9 and 5 seats respectively and had a meagre 0.3% vote share every.

Alliances are already set right here like Bihar, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, however modifications in dynamics play a job right here as some allies have crisscrossed like JD(U), Sena and NCP. The third-ranked social gathering secured extra votes than the margin of victory in 24 seats.

PM Modi’s Name For 50%+ vote share for NDA

Together with the Class 1 and a couple of seats the place the BJP received 303, it’s prone to be a detailed battle in 43 of those seats, the place the BJP positioned third and spoiled the probabilities of the Congress (13) and regional events (30). These seats may swing in favour of the INDIA alliance. However, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has set a goal of fifty% plus for the NDA within the 2024 elections.

Whereas some may brush it off, the BJP’s vote share is about to extend because the social gathering can be contesting extra seats in Bihar, Maharashtra and Punjab, the place allies have walked out. The goal should not be taken flippantly by the INDIA alliance events because the BJP achieved an identical feat in Gujarat 2022, when political pundits thought it had peaked. In Bihar alone it might achieve a 1-1.5% vote share. Because the BJP is aware of its opponents 10 months prematurely, it has a variety of time to organize and strategise to neutralise influence of opposition events coming collectively.

Situation Evaluation

The BJP begins with a base of 303 seats. If there’s a 5 per cent swing in opposition to the BJP on the seats it received in 2019, (implying the BJP’s vote share declines by 5% and runner-up’s vote share will increase by 5%), the BJP’s tally may decline by 80 seats, to 223. The swing may very well be because of native stage anti-incumbency, the rise in reputation of the INDIA alliance, an inactive BJP cadre over-dependent on Modi, the Congress social gathering’s 5 guarantees gaining traction and so on. To notice, as per polls carried out submit Karnataka outcomes, together with by CSDS, Prime Minister Modi’s reputation and NDA’s vote share stays intact.


However, if there’s a 5% swing in favour of the BJP on the seats the place it completed as a runner up in 2019, (implying the BJP’s vote share will increase by 5% and the winner’s vote share declines by 5%), the BJP’s tally may enhance by 39 seats to 342. The swing may very well be because of a variety of things together with pro-incumbency, the rise in reputation of Prime Minister Modi and the NDA, new schemes to sort out points like inflation, unemployment, corruption, and variations throughout the INDIA alliance.

In impact, the BJP’s vary appears to be 223 seats (decrease finish) to 342 seats (higher finish) relying upon how issues form up within the subsequent 10 months and who seizes the narrative.

(Amitabh Tiwari is a political strategist and commentator. In his earlier avatar he was a company and funding banker.)

Disclaimer: These are the private opinions of the creator.

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