History of parties defeating Congress in local elections

Gandhinagar, 23 August 2022

Local Swaraj elections in rural and urban areas of Gujarat have been ruled by smaller and separate parties of the Congress. In the past, the Zilla Panchayats, Taluka Panchayats, Municipalities were ruled by non-Congress parties.


In 1968, a front of 5 anti-Congress parties with different ideologies won in Bhavnagar. Praja Samajwadi Party has earlier ruled in Mahuva and Savarkundla Talpak Panchayats. The Communist Party has ruled Palitana Taluk earlier.

Jan Sangh started

Jan Sangh’s first victory in Gujarat was in 1967 in Botad Municipality. The Jana Sangh was a branch of the RSS. Now it is BJP. Botad was a part of Bhavnagar district, which is now the district headquarters. In the 1967–68 elections in Botad, the Jana Sangh was successful in its first victory. During this time Rajkot was also ruled by the then Jana Sangh.


Praja Samajwadi Party was ruling for 5 years till 1964 in Mahuva of Bhavnagar district. Mahuva was considered the stronghold of Jaswant Mehta and Chhabildas Mehta. Who later went to Congress and Janata side. Ibrahim Kalaniya was the youth president of Mahuva Municipality. All the seats of Mahuva went to Prajawadi Samajwadi Party – Prasopa’s account.

Communist regime

The Palitana municipality of Bhavnagar district was ruled by the Communist Party before 1962. Palitana was also briefly ruled by the CPM in the 1980s. Most of the leaders of the Communist Party of Bhavnagar district were E.M.S. Nambudweep and joined the Communist Party (Marxist) ie CPM under the leadership of Jyotibasu.

Communist legislator

In 1972, in the midst of the Indira wave, Batuk Vora was elected MLA from the Jain Tirth seat of Palitana in the assembly elections. He won the election as a candidate of the Communist Party. He lost in 1975.
Batuk Vora was a journalist. He was a columnist in the newspaper. Till then he remained loyal to the communist ideology.


Savarkundla was in Bhavnagar district before 1996, then shifted to Amreli. From 1957 to 1967, the Praja Samajwadi Party ruled the Savarkundla municipality, winning all seats. Navinchandra was the chairman of Ravani Municipality. Navinchandra Ravani lost the elections to the Legislative Assembly in 1962 and 1967 and to the Parliament in 1967.

Despite the challenge of Praja Samajwadi Party in 1962, the Congress rule in Savarkundla continued.

After 1970, Ravani joined the Congress with the group. Navinchandra Ravani became MLA in 1972. In 1973, Ravani also became the Deputy Chief Pradhan. Ravani lost the 1975 assembly elections. Navinchandra Ravani won the Lok Sabha elections in 1980 and 1985 as an Indira Congress candidate.

The beginning of a united front

In 1967, the University Movement formed a front of 5 parties for 40 seats in the Bhavnagar municipal election. Jana Sangh Party was formed in 1952. The Jana Sangh merged with the Janata Party in 1977. He was the leader of the Sansangha, in 1980, the Sangh took a new avatar as the Bharatiya Janata Party.
The Samantha Party, which is supposed to be a completely right-wing party with the slogan of agrarian free market, Jana Sangh, another hidden wing of the RSS, Jana Sangh, a Communist party with a left-wing ideology, Dr. Ram Manohar Lohia’s United Socialist Party and Chandrashekhar’s Praja Samajwadi Party were involved in the front.

26 corporators from United Front and 13 from Congress won. 12 councilors of the Communist Party won. The Independent Party won 1 Corporate. Neeru Patel of Communist Party and Kanu Thakkar of Samyukta Samajwadi Party won the elections from two wards. One of the Communist Party’s extremist women leaders was Niru Patel for the first year as president or mayor.

Hetswini Mehta of Praja Communist Party was elected vice-president. The Khadi Committee was headed by Kanu Thakkar, a militant leader of the SSP. The Chairman of the Nirman Samiti was Nagin Shah of Jana Sangh. In the second year all the office bearers were changed.

After 1982, Bhavnagar Municipality was made a Municipal Corporation. Then there was the rule of a joint party committee. In the first Bhavnagar Municipal Corporation elections in 1985, out of 51 corporators, Congress had 23. Congress ruled with the support of independents. Since 1995, the Bhavnagar municipality has been ruled by the BJP.


In 1967, Left candidates won the Dhoraji Municipality of Rajkot.


The Mahagujarat Janata Parishad won a majority in 1962 in the first election after the Mahagujarat struggle in Ahmedabad, the political center of Gujarat. Mahagujarat Janata Parishad was the organization that fought a battle called Mahagujarat to separate Gujarat from Mumbai state. Congress again came to power in 1967. BJP since 1987. Was Mayor of Congress for 5 years in between


The Congress has come only once in Rajkot Municipality, the political center of Saurashtra. Rajkot was ruled by Congress from 2000 to 2005. BJP remains in power. This is a rare event in the political history of Gujarat to be in power continuously.


Jana Sangh, Congress, BJP have won in Junagadh.


Independents ruled Jamnagar from 1967 to 1972. First Congress then BJP rule.


Congress was in power in many places including Vadodara-Surat. BJP is ruling since 1995.

Why BJP since 1990

People of Gujarat have now stopped giving money and votes to regional parties. Also, out of 37 regional parties in the country, Gujarat does not have a single regional party in 2022. After Keshubhai Patel and Shankersinh Vaghela failed to handle the regional party in Gujarat, there are no more regional parties in Gujarat. Bhailabhai Patel’s Swatantra Party, Chimanbhai’s Kimlop-Janata Dal, Keshubhai’s Gujarat Change Party, Shankarsinh Vaghela’s Third Party could not get more than 8-12 per cent votes.

Aam Aadmi Party

AAP got 21.7 per cent votes in Gandhinagar elections, winning 27 seats in Surat Municipal Corporation. 8 There is no better place in the metropolis than Surat. Aam Aadmi Party is not visible in 250 city elections.

In 2021, the BJP has 800 seats in the Zilla Panchayat. Congress has 169.

In Taluka Panchayat, BJP got 52.27 percent votes with 3351 seats and Congress got 38.82 percent votes with 1252 seats. Aam Aadmi Party has got 31 seats. There were a total of 4771 seats.

Out of 2720 seats in the municipal corporation, BJP has won 2085 seats with 52.7 percent votes. Congress got 388 seats with 29.09 percent votes. NCP got 5 seats with 0.5 percent votes, Samajwadi Party got 14 seats with 0.83 percent votes, Aam Aadmi Party got 9 seats with 4.16 percent votes, Awaisi got 17 seats with 0.7 percent votes. Independent candidates have secured 24 seats with 1.19 per cent votes.

In 2010, the BJP had 2460 representatives out of a total of 4778. In 2015 it came down to 1718. While the number of Congress increased from 1428 to 2102.

In the 2015 Local Self-Government – Metropolitan Municipalities, Municipal Corporations and Panchayats elections, voter turnout increased by 4.59 percent. Therefore, the BJP lost most of the institutions in the elections to the Palika-Panchayats. BJP’s votes fell by 1.25 percent. The Congress won 23 out of 31 district panchayats, 151 out of 221 taluka panchayats and 12 municipalities. In the changing mood, the Congress eventually gained weight.

In 2021, the BJP got 54.19 percent of the votes in the district panchayat. Congress got 39.17 percent votes. Aam Aadmi Party got 2.66 percent votes.

In the 2002 Hindutva elections, the Congress got only 35.38 percent of the votes. Which increased to 43.52 percent at the end of 2015. Thus the impact of Hindutva was enormous on the voters. Which is also falling into 2021 today. This has come down to 39 percent in 2021. The population has decreased by 4%.

In Gujarat’s 26th Lok Sabha seat in 2019, BJP got 62.21 percent, Congress 32.11 percent, NOTA 1.38 percent, BSP 0.86 percent, NCP 0.09 percent, CPI 0.02 percent. Independents and others got 3.34 percent votes. Thus people choose only two parties.