With votes polled in the first phase of Uttar Pradesh assembly polls, the political parties are gearing for the round two where 55 seats in nine districts of western and central part of state might see interesting contest. In many of the assembly segments falling under phase two there are good number of Muslim votes and thus making the contest tough for the ruling Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP). The Samajwadi Party and Rahstriya Lok Dal (RLD) combine seems stronger in this region.
Sensing trouble in this phase the BJP has deployed all its star campaigners including the Prime Minister Narendra Modi who could not address a single rally in the first phase areas. On Thursday and Friday, PM Modi addressed two elections rallies in Saharanpur and Kasganj physically. Besides, on Friday alone a virtual rally of Modi was organized for the people of Hathrus, Ferozabad, Etah and Farrukhabad.
Compared to first phase the second phase is considered tough for BJP due to the presence of large number of Muslim voters in the region. In the second phase polling would held on 55 seats in Saharanpur, Rampur, Bijnore, Amroha, Sambhal, Moradabad, Bareilly, Badaun and Shahjahanpur districts on February 14. Of 55 seats 38 were won by BJP in the 2017 assembly polls while SP had 15 and congress two. The number of Muslim voters in Rampur, Moradabad, Bijnore and Amroha exceed 40 per cent while in Bareilly its share in total votes is 34.54 per cent. In Rampur district the number of Muslim voters are maximum in UP with 50.57 per cent.
According to political analyst Ram Kumar who hails from Saharanpur, the large number of Muslim voters in the region and this time with RLD with it, SP is expecting good performance in the second phase. The Jat voters too are in good numbers in Sharanpur, Bijnore, Amroha and Moradabad and many of them have been showing inclination towards RLD this time. He said that unlike previous assembly elections, there is not much division seen among minority votes and that makes things more tough for ruling BJP. The BJP would face stiff challenge from SP-RLD combine in Rampur, Sambhal, Moradabad, Bijnor, Amroha and Saharanpur. On certain assembly seats such as Rampur city, Moradabad and Sambhal Sadar, Amroha and Behat the musilm voters are nearly 60 per cent. Despite a BJP last time the opposition parties and mainly SP had won on these seats. With no wave particularly in favour of any party this time, the ruling BJP would face difficulty on many of the seats in this phase, says Ram Kumar.
Muslim Votes In Second Phase Districts
Moradabad ---- 50.80%
Amroha --- 40.78%
Bijnor --- 43.04%
Bareilly --- 34.54%
Sambhal --- 32.88%
Badaun --- 23.26%