The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) won 303 out 543 seats in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. The victory was a clear landslide for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s party. However, we wanted to look at how much of a fight the competition put up. To do this, we used the difference between the votes received by the leading party and the trailing party, i.e., the margin of victory, as a proxy to determine the strength of the contest in a constituency.
While the Biju Janata Dal party came second to the BJP in only eight constituencies, it seems to have put up the strongest fight, losing by an average of just 50,569 votes. In comparison, the Indian National Congress trailed the BJP by an average of 274,458 votes in 175 constituencties.Three other parties’ average margins of victory can be seen in Figure 1.
Further, we looked at the constituencies in which other parties beat the BJP. The average margins of victory are shown in Figure 2. Here, a similar trend is seen: the INC only beat the BJP by an average of 94,784 votes across 15 constituencies compared to the All India Trinamool Congress’ 159,733 average vote win in 21 constituencies.