Poor already behind it, AAP tapped rich too

The AAP had a massive 44 percentage point lead over the BJP among poor voters.

New Delhi | Updated: February 12, 2015 10:26 am
Kejriwal in Trilokpuri during the campaign.(File) Arvind Kejriwal in Trilokpuri during the campaign. (File)

There is a common belief that the result of the 2015 election reflects a class divide in the city. While class does remain an important social cleavage in the city, commentators have exaggerated its role in determining the electoral outcome. Data from this post-poll survey clearly shows that the massive victory of the Aam Aadmi Party is a result of both a high consolidation of lower-class voters in its favour and the party’s success in making inroads among the upper class.

The AAP had a massive 44 percentage point lead over the BJP among poor voters. The BJP’s vote share among the poor was just 22 per cent, while 66 per cent of them voted for the AAP. The gap between the two parties among the middle class might be relatively lower (16 percentage points) but it is significant in terms of its effect. The BJP performed best among the upper class voters as the gap narrows down to just 4 percentage points (see graphs).

RicherPoor-body

A similar pattern is also seen in terms of where voters live. The AAP had a vote share of 51 per cent in Rural Delhi, which the BJP had swept even in 2013. There is strong support for the AAP in the lower-income settlements — LIG DDA colonies and JJ clusters and slums. The party had a vote share of 59 per cent in the former, five points more than its average vote share in the state, and swept the latter with close to two-thirds of the votes. Lower support for the BJP among the middle and lower classes is also reflected spatially as the party performed poorly in the less developed colonies. It is apparent that the BJP’s claim of regularising unauthorised colonies failed to enthuse the voters. The contest between the BJP and the AAP was tight only in the posh areas (see table).
Poor

The data suggests that one should not over-read the voting patterns of various economic sections as a “class divide”. First, the voting patterns of the poor and rich are not divergent. Though relatively lower, the middle classes too supported the AAP in large numbers. The AAP has managed to create the kind of cross-class support that the Congress used to enjoy in the city before 2013. The BJP, on the other hand, has been left with only its core support group among the upper and upper-middle classes.

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Second, it would be naïve to say that class politics would exist in an environment in which all parties are trying to build a cross-class coalition. If cheaper electricity and water were Arvind Kejriwal’s main pitch, the BJP too targeted the same constituency by promising ‘Jahaan jhuggi, wahin makaan’ and benefits from central schemes like Jan Dhan Yojana. The AAP may have got more votes from the poor, but the fact that voters from middle and upper classes too voted for it means that it would be difficult for the AAP to engage in politics of the poor and ignore its middle-class base.

By: Sanjay Kumar & Pranav Gupta

The authors are associated with Lokniti, CSDS

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  1. A
    Anthony
    Feb 12, 2015 at 1:48 pm
    So the corrupt people voted for BJP, is that the take of this analysis.
    Reply
    1. G
      Gautam
      Feb 12, 2015 at 4:43 pm
      Moral of the story is AAP got bumper voting from All sections, religions, casts, cles. that's it !!!!!!!!!!!
      Reply
      1. A
        Anuradha Kalhan
        Feb 12, 2015 at 9:15 pm
        About one in three voted for the BJP . If that is the corrupt and communal section in Delhi, it is very frightening indeed and we need strong unity against that segment to survive !
        Reply
        1. J
          JKG
          Feb 12, 2015 at 11:26 am
          middle cl also voted for AAP
          Reply
          1. A
            ARun
            Feb 12, 2015 at 2:50 am
            The rich are babus and their chamchas serving Congress for a while. They don't like BJP nor they can do anything about their love (Congress). So they settled with AAP
            Reply
            1. R
              Raj Patil
              Feb 12, 2015 at 6:32 am
              WTF THIS MAN IS NOTHING BUT A BIG LIAR, HOW CAN DELHI PEOPLE BELIEVE HIM? WHAT SHANTI BHUSHAN TOLD US YESTERDAY IS RIGHT. HE TOOK MONEY FOR TICKETS BUT THAT MONEY IS NOT DECLARED ON WEBSITE. WHERE DID THAT GO? WHY HE WAS ACCUSING ALL THE PARTIES AS CRIMINALS. NOW HE HIMSELF IS HAVING 23 MLA'S CRIMINAL. NOW HE WILL SAY OTHERS HAVE MORE COMPARE TO ME AND DELHI PEOPLE WILL BELIEVE HIM
              Reply
              1. S
                seraj
                Feb 12, 2015 at 7:10 pm
                C&C (corrupt & communal) voted BJP while H&P (honest and patriot) voted AAP and rest people voted Congress. Supporter of BJP talk about everything but never talk about Honesty, unity, equality, communal harmony, justice etc. They are self made Nationalist with their own definition and all those not agree with their ideology are neither Nationalist nor Hindu? Nationalism and Hinduism are now patent of BJP only.
                Reply
                1. S
                  seraj
                  Feb 12, 2015 at 6:59 pm
                  who is liar, check response on your comment.
                  Reply
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