It was the 10% swing that did it

New Delhi, Nov 23 | Updated: Nov 24 2005, 05:30am hrs
A powerful anti-incumbency wave against the RJD and its chief Lalu Prasad, which resulted in a positive swing of almost 10% votes in favour of the JD(U)-BJP, catapulted Nitish Kumar to power.

Significantly, the reverse swing of votes was less than 1% for the RJD-led front, but it got translated into a loss of 29 seats. It was down to 65 seats from the February tally of 89 seats. The NDA combine, on the other hand, found itself reaping an electoral harvest of 142 seats in the 243- member Assembly.

The RJD, lost 20 seats by itself when compared to the tally it had won in the Assembly polls just six months before. Lalu Prasads party, which had secured 25.4% votes then, polled 24.17% this time. The SDF constituentsRJD, Congress, NCP and CPI-M collectively polled 31.08% votes, just 0.95% less than what they got in February.

Barring RJD, only the NCP had a negative swing of 0.36%.

Interestingly, the Congress vote share went up 0.53% compared with last time although its number of seats came down. For the NDA, which had a positive swing of 9.68%- 5.26% for JD-U and 4.42% for BJPover the last polls, it meant a lot of difference as it enabled the alliance to wrest Bihar with 142 seats, 20 more than the half-way mark in the Assembly and 50 more than last time.