Bihar Elections Too Close To Call: Exit Polls

  Exit polls at the end of the assembly elections in Bihar seem to have gone against the opinion polls during the elections.   The race to power is between two major alliances – National Democratic Alliance (NDA) led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Mahagatbandhan (Grand Alliance) led by … Continued

Gushing Over Female Voter Turnout In Bihar Misplaced

  “Women voters outnumber men in Bihar polls”.   “Bihar has the lowest percentage of women voters”.   While the former is a familiar headline to close observers of Indian elections, the latter is perhaps not. Neither statement is false or incongruous with each other.   As the state of Bihar labours through a five-phase … Continued

In Bihar’s Political Realignment, Women Suffer

  As a first-time member of the legislative assembly (MLA) in Bihar, Jyothi Devi, 46, did well over her five-year term: She had 10 bridges—some of which were demanded since independence—and 3,300 km of roads constructed in her constituency, Barachatti, including several link roads connecting villages to the Grand Trunk Road that cuts across Gaya … Continued

Bihar’s Swinging Vote: The BJP’s Advantage

Prime Minister, Narendra Modi addressing a rally in Patna, Bihar on October 25, 2015. Image: BJP   With the third phase of polling in Bihar scheduled for today, assembly constituency trends from the 2014 Lok Sabha elections establish the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) strong voter base in India’s third-most populous state.   While the BJP … Continued

Crimes Against Bihar’s Vulnerable Communities Soar

Image used for illustrative purposes only.   An inadequate police force is struggling to cope with a rising crime graph against Bihar’s vulnerable communities.   Bihar has seen a 20-fold increase in crime against children–from 115 in 2005 to 2255 in 2014–over the past 10 years, according to data released by National Crime Records Bureau. … Continued

4 Factors That Will Likely Decide Bihar Polls

  Given that the ongoing Bihar elections could be decided by the slimmest of margins–and, with a vast redrawing of the political landscape, too confused to call, according to this Mint analysis–the state’s 3.1 million new voters could play a crucial role.   Will the new voters swing the elections in favour of Prime Minister … Continued

38-Year-Old Legacy Hangs Over Bihar Polls

  “Why were you sitting next to the persons responsible for arresting JP?” Prime Minister Narendra Modi rhetorically asked rival Nitish Kumar during his Bihar election run.   The 38-year-old JP Movement, or what is also known as the Bihar Movement, is in the limelight again, as the political battle for India’s second-most populous state … Continued

Bihar: Can BJP Continue 2014 Winning Streak?

BJP president Amit Shah addressing a public rally in Chhapra, Bihar last week. Image: BJP   The first phase of Bihar elections for 49 seats saw a voter turnout of 57%, according to Election Commission of India.   There are two reasons that assembly elections in Bihar, scheduled to be held in five phases from … Continued ...

4%-8%: Success Rate Of Clean Candidates In Bihar

  If the past two elections are any indication, candidates for the forthcoming assembly elections in Bihar are likely to have a string of “heinous” cases against them in court: murder, extortion, kidnapping, robbery and dacoity and crimes against women, including rape.   All political parties–there are no exceptions–pick candidates with serious criminal charges. Why … Continued

Power Demand Up 94%, But Bihar Cannot Cope

  Bihar is now India’s second-fastest growing economy among poor states, with a peak power demand that has risen 94% about seven years. This growth-driven surge in electricity demand sounds impressive–until you sift through the details of the data.   With 104 million people, India’s third-most populous state reported a peak power demand of 3,500 … Continued