Election results 2024: BJP’s southern push yields a mixed bag

BJP fails to get a single seat in T.N., despite the PM expending his political capital there; wins Thrissur to snag Kerala seat for first time; likely to gain four seats in Telangana, three in A.P., loses eight in Karnataka in comparison to 2019

Published - June 04, 2024 08:31 pm IST - NEW DELHI

BJP supporters celebrate the party’s success in Lok Sabha elections, in Bengaluru, on June 4, 2024.

BJP supporters celebrate the party’s success in Lok Sabha elections, in Bengaluru, on June 4, 2024. | Photo Credit: PTI

The BJP’s southern push for the 131 Lok Sabha seats from the five States of Kerala, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, and Tamil Nadu resulted in a mixed bag on June 4, with the party losing a few seats in Karnataka while opening its account for the first time in Kerala.

The Congress emerged as the single largest party in the south with 42 seats, while the BJP was ahead in 29. The BJP’s gains mainly came from Telangana, where it was ahead in eight seats compared to the four it won in 2019. In Karnataka, however, the party only won 17 seats, compared to the 25 seats it had won in the 2019 election.

Kerala debut

The BJP’s alliance with the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) and the Jana Sena in Andhra Pradesh saw the party win in three out of the six seats it contested, up from a zero tally in 2019. The victory in Kerala’s Thrissur was considered sweet for the BJP as the party has never won a seat in the State before.

It was in Tamil Nadu, however, where Prime Minister Narendra Modi has invested much political capital in the last few years, that the party came a complete cropper, with Opposition INDIA bloc winning all 39 seats in the State.

For the BJP’s nationwide strategy, the south was a crucial component as it had felt secure in the north and west of the country and was hoping to gain seats in the southern and eastern States. For that strategy, this was a mixed result, sweet in some parts but sour in others.

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