Mamata, Jayalalithaa and BJP: The Story of Assembly Elections 2016


May 19, 2016

A file photo of AIADMK chief Jayalalithaa, TMC's Mamata Banerjee, BJP's Sarbananda Sonowal and CPM's Pinarayi Vijayan.

May 19, 2016

A file photo of AIADMK chief Jayalalithaa, TMC's Mamata Banerjee, BJP's Sarbananda Sonowal and CPM's Pinarayi Vijayan.

This round of Assembly elections is about two ladies and a national party, which not surprisingly is not the Congress. The incumbent Trinamool Congress in West Bengal and AIADMK in Tamil Nadu have come back to rule the states with a resounding victory while the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has created history in Assam and Kerala.

Mamata Banerjee in West Bengal and J Jayalalithaa in Tamil Nadu have propelled their parties to resounding victories even though they were facing a united opposition.

It has also been a historic end to the electoral battle in Assam where the BJP unseated the Congress surging ahead to form its first government in the northeastern state in alliance with Asom Gana Parishad and Bodoland People's Front.

Marred by corruption allegations, the Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF) was knocked out by the CPM-headed Left Democratic Front (LDF) in Kerala. The God's Own Country also brought some cheers in the BJP camp with its leader O Rajagopal writing his name in history as the first party candidate to win an Assembly seat.

What initially seemed to be a neck-and-neck battle in Puducherry, finally went DMK-Congress combine's way. The ruling All India NR Congress (AINRC) slipped to the second spot in the 30-member Assembly.

West Bengal

Proving her detractors wrong, Mamata powered Trinamool Congress to a landslide victory in West Bengal. With (210) seats in the 294-member house, Mamata Banerjee is will take oath on May 27 as the Chief Minister of the state for the second time. The TMC has put up an impressive show in West Bengal by even surpassing its 2011 tally of 184 seats when it was in alliance with the Congress.

Unable to make much impression despite coming together, the Left-Congress alliance was left licking its wounds with only 75 seats.

As soon as the trends became clear, Mamata launched a scathing attack on the Left-Congress alliance. "The selfish leaders of the Left have lost Bengal. Congress has compromised their ideology by going with Left," she asserted and added that she has won against the web of conspiracy that was built around her.

She assured the electorate that she would strictly follow the party manifesto as it is the guiding force and work for the development of the state. The BJP, which had put in a lot of effort, failed to make much gain winning only six seats.

Tamil Nadu

In is only for the second time in the history of the state that the ruling government has warded off anti-incumbency and returned to power. Chief Minister Jayalalithaa-led AIADMK won in the state by bagging (135) seats in the 234-member house.

It was way back in 1984 that Jaya's mentor and AIADMK founder MG Ramachandran managed to win successive Assembly polls in the state. Despite not being in the pink of health, the 68-year-old AIADMK supremo fought valiantly and has returned to rule the state for the fourth time as the Chief Minister.

The results have dashed 93-year-old DMK president M Karunanidhi’s hopes who had announced that he would take over as the chief minister if his party wins. The DMK has been reduced to —- seats in the Assembly.

Tamil Nadu has once again shown that there is no space for a Third Front. The DMDK alliance which claimed that it would be a big threat to the major regional parties – AIADMK and the DMK – could not even open its account in the state.


For the first time in the history of the state, the BJP will be a part of the government in Assam. Riding on a strong anti-incumbency against the 15-year-old rule of Congress, the party created a broad social coalition with AGP and BPF which decimated the opposition.

Along with the aggressive campaign and BJP's CM face Sarbananda Sonowal, Congress dissident leader Himanta Biswa Sarma, who had joined the party, has been instrumental in delivering the superlative result.

The BJP-led alliance won (88) seats in the 126-member house. Its closest rival and the ruling Congress was crushed to (24) seats.

The All India Democratic United Front of Badruddin Ajmal, which was claiming to be a major player, managed to bag only 13 seats. Ajmal himself lost to the Congress candidate from the South Salmara seat.


While the tradition of voting out the incumbent government was blown away in Tamil Nadu, United Democratic Front (UDF)-led alliance in neighboring Kerala was not so lucky. Left Democratic Front (LDF) returned to power winning 88 of the 140 seats. The ruling UDF was left way behind at 50.

In yet another major feat for the BJP, the party made its maiden entry into the state assembly after former union minister O Rajagopal won from Nemom constituency. Rajagopal, who had lost by a narrow margin in previous Lok Sabha and Assembly elections, wrested Nemom from sitting MLA and LDF leader V Sivankutty, defeating him by 8,671 votes.

From the bar bribery case to the solar scam, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy's Congress-led UDF government was tainted by allegations of corruption and it proved to be decisive in the end.


The Union Territory saw a close battle between Congress-DMK alliance and the AINRC with the former securing a simple majority in the 30-member Assembly. The yo-yo battle from the early trends converted into a clear majority for the Congress-DMK combine which bagged 17 seats while AINRC won just eight seats.

AIADMK bagged four seats while an independent candidate emerged as the winner in one constituency. Prominent among the successful Congress candidates were former chief minister and leader of the opposition in the outgoing assembly V Vaithilingam (Kamaraj Nagar), Pradesh Congress Committee President A Namassivayam (Villianur).

Courtesy: PTI