Normalization of the ‘Post-Congress Polity’
This book deals with the different aspects of electoral politics in Indian states during the period 2008-2012 and the nature of the relationship between between electoral politics in the states and at the all-India level. It reviews the changes in the system of party competition after the rise of a more stable bi-polar contest in Indian elections. While the first phase of the post-Congress polity during the 1990s saw the defeat of the incumbent parties in election after election, the next phase which this chapter examines is marked by a fair chance for the incumbent party to retain political power. The chapter shows that the dramatic features of the post-Congress polity, namely the participatory upsurge, political uncertainly and the emergence of new parties primarily on the basis of social identities, have been either subdued or have acquired a routine existence. Such a condition is described in this chapter as normalization of electoral competition.
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