This post has been self-published on Youth Ki Awaaz by frank John Walter. Just like them, anyone can publish on Youth Ki Awaaz.

Does Rahul Gandhi’s Defeat In Amethi Mark The End Of Dynastic Politics?

More from frank John Walter

The electoral battle of the largest democracy of the world ended on 19th May, when India went to vote in its last electoral phase. On 23rd May, 2019 poll results declared that the electoral battle has been won by the Narendra Modi-led Bhartiya Janta Party (NDA) taking the overall tally to 344 (leads/wins) out of 542 Lok Sabha constituencies, whilst the grand old party Indian National Congress (UPA) got only 93 seats.

Congress president Rahul Gandhi (Photo by Pankaj Nangia/India Today Group/Getty Images)

The results have stunned even the political pundits – because the NDA has won the 2019 elections with greater numbers than 2014, and the Congress improved only a few numbers compared to the last time. Out of the 542 seats, there were a few where the battle was more about pride and honour rather than simply winning the seat. Those key seats were Amethi, Guna and Rohtak – where political dynasts like Rahul Gandhi, Jyotiraditya Scindia and Bhupendra Singh Hooda were contesting respectively. The predecessors of above-mentioned politicians have won these seats since the last many years and these seats became their bastion.

It was fully believed that the dynast politicians will surely secure these seats, but the results of 2019 electoral battle turned the table to the other side, and these politicians have lost their bastion! Although Rahul Gandhi had also contested from Waynad in Kerala, all eyes were on Amethi where he faced a tough battle with Smriti Irani of BJP, and eventually lost his bastion to her. But the main question that arises here is – have people really discarded the concept of familism in politics or is it just a change for a while owing to the Modi factor? Is this the end of familism in elections?

Let’s have a look at Amethi. This Lok Sabha constituency has been the bastion of the most powerful family of India, the Gandhi family since 1967. The family has lost this seat twice. In 1977 to Ravindra Pratap Singh of Janata Party, who won over Sanjay Gandhi with a margin of 75,814 votes. Amethi was later captured by Sanjay Gandhi again in 1980. The second time Gandhi family lost Amethi was in 1998, when Sanjay Singh of BJP won over Satish Sharma of Congress with a margin of 23,270 votes. But soon in 1999, Sonia Gandhi won back Amethi with a margin of 300,012 votes and since then, it has remained a bastion for Gandhi family till 2019 – when Smriti Irani took Amethi from Rahul Gandhi with a margin of around 23,000 votes.

It can be clearly seen that whenever Gandhi family members won Amethi, they have won it with a whopping margin and whenever they have lost it, it is only by a small margin. Moreover, Amethi has shown that it is not a bastion to any dynasty – as it had voted out Gandhi family twice but later they have returned to the Gandhi family. Does this win for BJP really marks the end of dynastic politics or will Amethi repeat the history of 1980, 1999 when it votes the Gandhi family back to power?

Congress MP Jyotiraditya Scindia (Photo by Mujeeb Faruqui/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

The other prestigious seat was Guna (Madhya Pradesh), where Jyotiraditya Scindia lost his bastion to Dr. K.P. Yadav of BJP with a margin of around 12% votes. Since 1952, Guna has been a traditional seat for the Congress and the Scindia family and since then, Guna has been won by Congress ten times and only four times by BJP. Since 1999, it has been a fort for the royal Scindia family. In 2014, Jyotiraditya Scindia won with a margin of 120,792 votes against  Jaibhan Singh Pawaiya of BJP. Only next elections will tell how long will it take for Guna to return to the royal family. Or will it ever return?

Rohtak of Haryana has also been the bastion for the Hooda family since 1991, but Deependra Singh Hooda lost it to Arvind Kumar of BJP by a margin of 1.7% of votes. Deependra Singh Hooda won in 2014 with a margin of 1,70,627 votes against the Om Prakash Dhankar of BJP.

Looking at the past and present election results in these bastions, it is clear that people who have ruled these seats have lost them only with a very small percentage of votes and have always won them with a large percentage of votes. If history is to be understood, these seats might return to their dynast politicians in the next election. But they may never return too – because democracy is all about the government of people.

You must be to comment.

More from frank John Walter

Similar Posts

By pratyush prashant

By Ridhima Manocha

By Ishaan Bansal

Wondering what to write about?

Here are some topics to get you started

Share your details to download the report.









We promise not to spam or send irrelevant information.

Share your details to download the report.









We promise not to spam or send irrelevant information.

An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

Read more about his campaign.

Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

Read more about her campaign.

MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Read more about her campaign. 

A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Find out more about the campaign here.

A native of Bhagalpur district – Bihar, Shalini Jha believes in equal rights for all genders and wants to work for a gender-equal and just society. In the past she’s had a year-long association as a community leader with Haiyya: Organise for Action’s Health Over Stigma campaign. She’s pursuing a Master’s in Literature with Ambedkar University, Delhi and as an MHM Fellow with YKA, recently launched ‘Project अल्हड़ (Alharh)’.

She says, “Bihar is ranked the lowest in India’s SDG Index 2019 for India. Hygienic and comfortable menstruation is a basic human right and sustainable development cannot be ensured if menstruators are deprived of their basic rights.” Project अल्हड़ (Alharh) aims to create a robust sensitised community in Bhagalpur to collectively spread awareness, break the taboo, debunk myths and initiate fearless conversations around menstruation. The campaign aims to reach at least 6000 adolescent girls from government and private schools in Baghalpur district in 2020.

Read more about the campaign here.

A psychologist and co-founder of a mental health NGO called Customize Cognition, Ritika forayed into the space of menstrual health and hygiene, sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights and gender equality as an MHM Fellow with YKA. She says, “The experience of working on MHM/SRHR and gender equality has been an enriching and eye-opening experience. I have learned what’s beneath the surface of the issue, be it awareness, lack of resources or disregard for trans men, who also menstruate.”

The Transmen-ses campaign aims to tackle the issue of silence and disregard for trans men’s menstruation needs, by mobilising gender sensitive health professionals and gender neutral restrooms in Lucknow.

Read more about the campaign here.

A Computer Science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate sector, before realising she wanted to work in the development and social justice space. Since then, she has worked with Teach For India and Care India and is from the founding batch of Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), a one of its kind organisation creating leaders for the development sector through its experiential learning post graduate program.

As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

Share your details to download the report.









We promise not to spam or send irrelevant information.

A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

Srilekha has also contributed to sustainable livelihood projects and legal aid programs for survivors of sex trafficking. She has been conducting research based programs on maternal health, mental health, gender based violence, sex and sexuality. Her interest lies in conducting workshops for young people on life skills, feminism, gender and sexuality, trauma, resilience and interpersonal relationships.

A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform Change.org, demanding that the Government of Assam install
biodegradable sanitary pad vending machines in all government schools across the state. Her petition on Change.org has already gathered support from over 90000 people and continues to grow.

Bidisha was selected in Change.org’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
campaigns, which were widely recognised. Through the #BleedwithDignity campaign; she organised and celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day, 2019 in Guwahati, Assam by hosting a wall mural by collaborating with local organisations. The initiative was widely covered by national and local media, and the mural was later inaugurated by the event’s chief guest Commissioner of Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) Debeswar Malakar, IAS.

Sign up for the Youth Ki Awaaz Prime Ministerial Brief below