Asia St: What to Watch in India’s 2022 State Elections

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What to Watch in India’s 2022 State Elections

January 25, 2022

BGA’s India team, led by Managing Director Ratan Shrivastava, wrote a piece on India’s upcoming state elections. The update addressed the context for the development and implications for clients.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi (Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons).

Context

  • Five states in India – Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Manipur, Uttarakhand and Goa – are set to go to the polls in the next few weeks.
  • Polling will begin on February 10 with an estimated 184 million voters expected to vote. Out of these, 2.5 million will be first time voters and 85.5 million will be women.

Significance

  • These state elections for a total of 690 assembly seats – 403 in Uttar Pradesh, 117 in Punjab, 70 in Uttarakhand, 60 in Manipur and 40 in Goa – are expected to be a critical battle and a bellwether for the 2024 general election in the country.
  • The polls are likely to test the popularity of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ruling Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) and demonstrate the ability of opposition parties to rise together to challenge the BJP in 2024. The BJP is currently in power in four of the five states, while the Indian National Congress holds power in the state of Punjab.

Implications

  • Companies should view a BJP victory in politically important Uttar Pradesh as a stamp of approval for Modi’s fiscally conservative policies, his large-scale public investment in infrastructure and his focus on rapid adoption of next generation technology.
  • Punjab, which has been affected over the last year by protests from farmers against the now repealed farm laws, is likely to be an indicator of the political fallout from the unrest.

BGA will continue to keep you updated on developments in India as they occur. If you have any questions or comments, please contact BGA India Managing Director Ratan Shrivastava