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Party Competition in Indian StatesElectoral Politics in Post-Congress Polity$
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Suhas Palshikar, K C Suri, and Yogendra Yadav

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780198099178

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198099178.001.0001

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Between Fortuna and Virtu

Between Fortuna and Virtu

Explaining Congress’ Ambiguous Victory in 2009

(p.42) 1 Between Fortuna and Virtu
Party Competition in Indian States

Yogendra Yadav

Suhas Palshikar

Oxford University Press

This chapter offers an analysis of the outcome of the Lok Sabha elections of 2009. Using aggregate data it explains the nature of the victory of the Congress party showing how the structure of competition favoured the Congress. The chapter shows that three political elements worked in favour of the Congress: coalition making, governmental performance and the leadership. It contextualizes the election outcome by discussing the trends from previous elections and the nature of party competition around 2009. It further employs survey data to demonstrate the social bases of the support garnered by different political formations. The chapter also relates the outcome to the campaign and strategies of different parties. It argues that much of the play of power takes place in conditions that are not of the making of or amenable to change by anyone and yet the centrality of political skills, prowess and wisdom in modern politics remain crucial.

Keywords:   Lok Sabha elections 2009, seat-vote multiplier, third electoral system, non-congressism, depolarization, strategy and tactics, governance, campaign effect

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