Uttarakhand Vidhan Sabha is a unicameral governing and also the law making body of the state of Uttarakhand.
It is one of the 29 states of India and is situated at Dehradun, which is also the interim state capital of Uttarakhand. The state legislative assembly has the strength of 71 members of the Legislative assembly i.e. MLA. Out of the 70 seats in the Legislative Assembly, 36 seats are needed to claim a clear majority win. Analyzing the previous elections in 2012, none of the parties won a clear majority but the Indian National Congress managed to form the government with the help of Progressive Democratic Front (Uttarakhand) in the leadership of Vijay Bahuguna.
Talking about the voter statistics of Uttarakhand, in a single phase of 69 seats of the Vidhan Sabha, the voter turnout was 68% on 15th February 2017. Dalit-Muslim politics of Uttar Pradesh in a way gave a way to Brahmin-Thakur dominance in Uttarakhand.
Thakurs-Brahmins: – The Thakur-Brahmins combination is a tried and tested combination for congress in Uttarakahand, as congress is heavily banking on these particular communities for a perfect vote share as the community together makes up for the 60% of the voters. A rough estimate says that Thakurs constitute 35% of the state’s population while 25%of the residents are Brahmins.
Muslims: – in all the 11 assembly constituencies in Haridwar district, Dalits and Muslims are in a position to decide the winner and candidates of either of the political parties leave no stone unturned to woo this section of voters. Out of 18,90,422 population of Haridwar district, there are 6,48,119 Muslims (34.28%). So Muslims in all constitute 20% of the voters in each assembly seat of the district.
Dalit: – The Dalit’s of Uttarakhand constitute almost one-fourth, precisely to be 23% of the population. The majority of the Uttarakhand Dalits have traditionally been Congress supporters and this was the fact brought to the fore when congress registered a historic victory in the first Assembly Elections of 2002.
While appointing a Dalit Chief Minister like never before may help concerned political parties win in the long run, but it will symbolically hit at the very heart of the upper caste domination of the polity and social life of Uttarakhand.