Apart from the time between 1996 and 1998, Gujarat has been under the rule of Bharatiya Janata Party since 1995. The state from where the current Prime Minister was once the chief minister and the playground for one of the biggest controversies in recent Indian politics, Gujarat is a state very crucial to the political map.
It was in the 2014 elections that BJP won all 26 seats together, not leaving even one for the Congress. Congress lost all the 11 seats they had won in 2009. As News Nation reports, The BJP received 1,52,49,243 votes with a whopping vote share of 60.11 per cent, while the Congress was able to garner 84,86,083 votes in the state with a vote share of 33.45 per cent.
Yet, the performance of Congress party in the 2017 Assembly elections had been a game changer indeed, especially considering that they have been out of the game in Gujarat for almost two decades now. The rising of political figures like Alpesh Thakor, who joined the Indian National Congress in 2017, and Jignesh Mevani had had an impact on their vote share. Mevani contested in Vadgam constituency as an independent candidate, supported by both Indian National Congress and Aam Aadmi Party. Congress allied with the Bharatiya Tribal Party, and with the support of Alpesh Thakor, Jignesh Mevani and Hardik Patel gained 80 seats in the state. It was the first time the BJP failed to touch a 100 seat marked and went on to form an assembly with 90 members out of 182.
Hardik Patel, yet another important face in Gujarat politics, is set to join Indian National Congress in coming few days and he will be contesting the Lok Sabha election from Jamnagar constituency, as reported by News18. The Patidar agitation spearheaded by Hardik Patel had been a blow for the BJP in the Saurashtra region of the state in last Assembly elections.