The Year That Was

How political parties performed in local bodies’ polls in 2020

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The Year That Was

District Development Council (DDC) polls in Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir

The Year That Was

The eight-phase elections for the 280 DDC constituencies — 14 each in 20 districts – in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir were conducted from November 28 to December 19. This was the first democratic exercise after its special status was revoked and the erstwhile state was bifurcated into two Union Territories (UTs) – Jammu and Kashmir, Ladakh. People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD), led by National Conference (NC) patriarch Farooq Abdullah, won 110 seats. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) emerged as the single largest party in terms of seats and votes by winning 75 seats in the DDC elections. Among Gupkar partners, NC won sixty-seven seats out 164 it contested, and Former Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti’s PDP emerged victorious on twenty-seven seats out of sixty-eight seats. Independent candidates won 50, Congress 26 and Apni Party 12. In districts like Jammu, Udhampur, Samba and Kathua, the BJP swept the polls, winning 48 out of 56 seats. In short, the BJP secured control of six DDCs in Jammu and none in Kashmir. The PAGD has a majority in nine DDCs, all in Kashmir.

Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) elections

The Year That Was

A resurgent BJP ended the dominance of Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao’s Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) in the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) elections.  It emerged as the main challenger to the ruling TRS, increasing its tally from just four seats in 2016 to 48 in 2020.  The TRS won 56 seats and Asaduddin Owaisi-led All Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) 44, same as it had won last time. The BJP’s performance was a shot in the arm for the party in Telangana politics as it now finally acknowledged as the main rival to the TRS in the State. Many considered GHMC polls as a semi-final to 2023 Assembly elections. TRS defeat in Dubbaka by-poll and the setback in GHMC proved that the BJP has acquired the status of main opposition to the ruling TRS.

Kerala local bodies’ polls

The Year That Was

State’s three political coalitions — CPI (M)-led Left Democratic Front (LDF), Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) — were in the fray in the three-phased elections to the decentralized tiers of local bodies at the village, block and district levels. Polls were conducted between December 8 and 14.  In the 2015 polls, the LDF won in four out of the six corporations, and two are in the UDF’s kitty. It almost repeated the same feat, winning 514 out of 941 gram panchayats, 108 out of 152 block panchayats, 10 out of 14 district panchayats, 35 out of 86 municipalities and three out of six corporations. The BJP could achieve an incremental growth, retained its Palakkad municipality besides capturing Pandalam municipality from the LDF. It increased its gram panchayat tally from 14 to 23.

The Rajasthan civic polls

The Year That Was

The outcome was interesting for everyone to see. While Congress performed better than the BJP in urban civic body polls. But the BJP dominated the rural polls. In the urban civic body polls, the Congress won in 619 ward, the BJP in 549 and Independents 595 out of a total of 1,775 wards. In the rural polls, the BJP won 353 out of 636 Zila Parishad member posts compared to 252 of the Congress and it won 1,989 Panchayat Samiti posts as opposed to 1,852 of the Congress.

Also Read: What forced the Centre to cancel the Winter Session of Parliament this year?