Home Indian Muslim Picture abhi baaki hai: Awadh, Purvanchal will decide who rules over UP

Picture abhi baaki hai: Awadh, Purvanchal will decide who rules over UP

By Faisal Fareed, Twocircles.net

The last four phases of polls have a lot to offer to political parties in Awadh and Poorvanchal region—194 seats, an amalgamation of caste politics, poor infrastructure and even the role of musclemen in the region.

The election in this region is different from Western UP. The area is not so developed as Western UP has close proximity to the National Capital Region. Farmers are not so wealthy in this region, land holdings are small and the number of marginal farmers are high. Industries are virtually nonexistent, and opportunities of jobs are minimal. Cash crops like sugarcane are also not present in every district of this region.

Caste wise also, the region is more complex than Western UP. Although there is a combination of Muslims, Dalits, and OBCs in this region too, categorising them as one homogenous vote bank would be a mistake. There are numerous sub-castes which are influential in pockets. OBCs have castes like Kurmi, Lod, Kushwaha, Maurya, Rajbhar, Nishad, Bind, Kashyap, Kewat, Saithwar, Badai, Nai, Lohar, Noniya Chauhan—around 80 sub-castes. In Dalits, there are numerous sub castes like Pasi, Khatik, Valmiki, Baksor, Dhobi etc. Among upper caste, there are Bhumihars also. These communities lobby around differently in different constituencies.

In these 194 seats spanning in 37 districts, 40 seats are reserved for SC and two are reserved for ST.

Religiously also the region is very influential. Ayodhya, Kashi, Chitrakoot, and Prayag—these religious places are there and Gorakhsapeeth at Gorakhpur is also located. These centers often influence the politics of the region. For example, the Mahanth of Gorakshapeeth, Yogi Adityanath, is the MP from Gorakhpur and the star campaigner for BJP.

Muslims in these regions are spread across districts like Azamgarh, Bahraich, Balrampur, Sidharthnagar, Ambedkarnagar, Sultanpur, Mau, Sant Kabir Nagar, Shrawasti, Gonda, Faizabad, Kushinagar, Maharajganj, and Varanasi. These districts have given 29 Muslim MLAs in 2012.

Musclemen also play important role in this region. Raghuraj Pratap Singh Raja Bhaiyya is in this phase who has been winning independently, Ansari Brothers have their own clout and have now merged their party Qaumi Ekta Dal with BSP, MLC Brijesh Singh is an adversary of Mukhtar Ansari and his nephew Sushil Singh is contesting. BSP’s Vineet Singh is also another criminal face. In the list there are Vijay Mishra, Yashbhadra Singh alias Monu, Dhananjay Singh, Abhay Singh, Jitendra Singh Bablu too are contesting from different seats. Mafia Don Munna Bajrangi has fielded his wife Seema Singh.

Smaller parties too have their role in these phases. Peace Party supremo Dr. Ayub is in the fray while QED has merged with BSP. Bharatiya Samaj Party of Rajbhar Community and Apna Dal (Sonelal) of Anupriya Patel having influence in Kurmi community have tied up with BJP. Nishad Dal is in alliance with Peace Party. These smaller parties often upset the result of many mainstream parties.


2012 Assembly Polls

Total Seats—194





Peace Party 3



Apna Dal-1