Poverty, Pandemic and Elections: Analysis of Bihar Assembly Elections 2020

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Research Article

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Indian Journal of Human Development


We analyse the Bihar assembly elections of 2020, and find that poverty was the key driving factor, over and above female voters as determinants. The results show that the poor were more likely to support the National Democratic Alliance (NDA). The relevance of this result for an election held in the midst of a pandemic is very crucial, given that the poor were the hardest hit. Second, in contrast to conventional commentary, the empirical results show that the All India Majlis-E-Ittehadul Muslimeen—‘AIMIM factor’ and the Lok Janshakti party—‘LJP factor’ hurt the NDA, while benefitting the Maha Gath Bandan (MGB), with their presence in these elections. The methodological novelty in this article has combined elections data with wealth data to study the effect of poverty on election outcomes.

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