The results of the 2016 Assembly elections will be released soon, and we will cover them thoroughly with an in-depth analysis. If you are like most of our friends, however, you are probably confused about how the elections work. This piece should bring you up to speed!
What are the Assembly Elections? And how are they different from the 2014 Elections which brought Modi to power?
The 2014 elections were the General Elections (also known as the Lok Sabha elections). In these elections, people vote for who will govern the central government of the country. You can think of them as elections that decide who the Prime Minister of the country should be.
On the other hand, Assembly Elections (also known as the Vidhan Sabha elections) are held at the state level. You can think of them as elections that decide who the Chief Minister of a state should be.
Duh, I knew that. But if that's the case, why is everyone saying that BJP must win state elections to make them stronger at the center?
That's where it gets a little more complicated. There are two parts of the Parliament - the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha. For any major law to pass, it must be passed by both parts. The BJP and its allies have a comfortable majority in the Lok Sabha, but do not yet have a majority in the Rajya Sabha.
While members of the Lok Sabha are directly elected by the people in the General Elections, Rajya Sabha members are elected by MLAs that win Assembly Elections. This means that the party that wins more seats in Assembly Elections is then able to elect more of their own to the Rajya Sabha.
This is why losing badly in Bihar and Delhi was such a big deal for the BJP last year, and why losing Assam or Kerala could be huge for Congress this year.
Got it. So what kind of results do we expect today?
These elections are being held in states where BJP has historically has very limited impact. It has never won a single seat in the Kerala, Tamil Nadu or West Bengal Assembly elections, and has been a very minor player in Assam.
Congress, on the other hand, has a lot to lose. The party has been decimated over the last 2 years, and a poor performance in Assam and Kerala will weaken it further. It is unlikely to win more than a handful of seats in Tamil Nadu, but will likely retain its strongholds in Eastern West Bengal.
Cool, where can I know more about the current elections?
Come back to thebroadline.com again in the evening! We will upload detailed analysis of the current elections by then. If you would rather have live coverage, check out the live blog of Times of India or NDTV .