The victory of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidates in the by-poll in three states has come as a morale booster to the saffron brigade in the Hindi heartland states of Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh.
While in Gujarat it won all the eight seats, in Uttar Pradesh it bagged six out of the seven which went to polls.
However, the most prestigious battle was in Madhya Pradesh where the party registered victory in 19 out of 28 states which went to poll. The rest nine went to the Congress.
It needs to be mentioned that 27 out of these 28 seats were in the hands of the Congress before the Holi-eve cross-over to the BJP. The defection of the Congress legislators led to the fall of the then Congress government led by Kamal Nath and just a day before the lockdown was imposed on March 24 the BJP leader in the state Assembly, Shivraj Singh Chauhan took oath as the chief minister of the state once again.
Had the Congress won 20 out of the 28 seats which went to by-poll on November 3 it would have given the party a chance to bounce back to power with the help of smaller parties and Independents. But that did not happen when the results were announced on November 10.
However, the Congress has a small consolation as seven out of nine seats it won are from the Gwalior region, the strong bastion of Jyotiraditya Scindia, who actually led a split in the Congress in March last.
Now the Congress leader and former chief minister Digvijay Singh is claiming that ‘a new Congress’ has emerged in the Gwalior region and claimed the verdict is a reflection of the weakening clout of Jyotiraditya Scindia in his own citadel.
It needs to be mentioned that three BJP ministers also lost to the Congress. Interestingly, almost all these new BJP legislators were themselves in the Congress till March.
So barring victory in Gwalior region there is no consolation for the Congress in any cow-belt state, including Bihar.
Besides, the results have clearly shown that Scindia will have to do a lot to increase his clout in the saffron party.