A caste and community-wise break-up circulating in political circles, claimed to be part of the 2011 caste census which is yet to be made public, shows Muslims constitute between 10 per cent and 61 per cent of votes at least in 66 of the total 182 Assembly seats in the state.
Political analysts say caste, and not development, will finally decide who is elected.
Of the total votes of nearly 3.7 crore, however, Muslims constitute only 9.89 per cent. They are followed by Leuva Patels, the community to which former chief minister Keshubhai Patel and Gordhan Zadaphia belong. Constituting 8.11 per cent of the state’s electorate, Leuva Patels can influence 41 Assembly seats, mainly in Saurashtra-Kutch and South Gujarat. At the third place are Thakors, a part of OBCs, with 7.67% votes and holding sway in 40 seats, mainly in North and Central Gujarat.
Scheduled Tribes, forming 12.35 per cent of Gujarat’s electorate, are the single largest group in terms of size, but they are decisive only in 34 seats, mainly on the eastern belt stretching from Ambaji in the north to Umargam in the south.
Kadva Patels, the community to which number minister Anandi Patel belongs, have influence in over 32 seats and form 6.42% of Gujarat’s electorate, mainly in North Gujarat and on some parts of Saurashtra.
Kolis and Darbar (Rajput) community together have influence in 32 seats and have a total vote share of 7.79% and 6.52%, respectively.
Brahmins and Jains are the smallest, at 3.12% and 2.41%, respectively. They hold influence in nearly 10 seats.
All other castes in general and Other Backward Classes (OBC) are have 9.65% and 12.4% vote shares, respectively.
Dinesh Shukala, a former professor of political science at Gujarat University, says, “Though both BJP and Congress are talking of development as an agenda, caste, sub-caste and regional balance become key issues which the parties only see at the last moment during selection of candidates. It will be an obvious issue in the upcoming elections.”
“Despite BJP’s claims, Muslims voting for it in large numbers is not possible. It can happen in a few pockets,” he says.
Ghanshyam Shah, a sociologist and former JNU professor, says caste politics has played a key role in Gujarat since 1967. “It will be a key factor in selection of candidates for both the parties this time also. However, except Muslims, other communities never vote en-bloc for any party in Gujarat, so local equations will play an important role,” he says.
To assess and identify mood and under current of voters in forthcoming election is a guess thing for media and will prove myth. This time unpredictable result would depend and no predict, analysis could be estimated correctly. Election result would reflect many thing perverted in the Gujarat politics. Only time will tell who will celebrate 2nd Diwali. Farmers, Voters, BJP, Congress or mess up.
No matter what Pundit says, the Gujarat has tasted the fruit of development and will not be swayed by the cast politics. All Patel will support Mr. Modi as they are the most out going community. Every Patel knows some one in foreign land and they are getting messages to support Mr. Modi. Kehsubhai's days are over and is no more in equation. When he visited USA, he has charge people money, I know so because he got $ 11,000 for speaking engagement and the Check was in favor of his nephew!
What critics says don't mind Mr.Modi,we need U as a CM of Gujarat upto 2014 and after PM of India.We expect U only can run INDIA smothly,with challenge. What (some)people are thinking we have throw the power to Corrupt UPA.We common man suffered a lot in the name of price rise. C toady LPG became very costlier.Gov.having no right to put cap on cylinders.In election time also they raise the price.Suddenly Mr.Moily HOLD the decision but not withdrawn.After election all will rise.Because corruption is everywhere.
Days are gone when people used to vote what cast leader was suggesting. So congress & GPP pl keep yourself busy in useless analysis. Development is winning as won in 2007.
How can Modi and his followers could forget that there is no no development in rural and tribal areas of Gujarat? Modi has hired PR agencies to project himself as man of development and one who can become the PM but the reality on grass root is totally different. Modi has allowed industrialist to loot Gujarat and if he becomes PM, he will let entire world to loot India...
It is found that inequality with respect to income, education and health is higher in Gujarat than some of the major states. Shockingly, in terms of hunger - as revealed by the 'State Hunger Index 2008' - Gujarat ranked 13th among 17 big states and worse than Orissa.
In Gujarat, the percentage of women suffering from anaemia has risen from 46.3% in 1999 to 55.5% in 2004, and amongst children from 74.5% to 80.1%. The conditions of dalits and women have deteriorated during the last decade; while those of Muslims and tribals are still worse.
For the last several years, Modi has been successful in projecting his "vibrant Gujarat" as a role model of economic growth and himself as ''Vikas Purush". Though one must give due credit to Modi for his effective skills in making projections, one must also critically analyse this "growth story of Gujarat" based on facts and figures. Regretfully, as one examines the facts since Modi came to power in Gujarat in 2001, the story appears to be hollow and, at times, contrary to what is being projected.
Mr. Ghanshyam Shah should know better. than to say that Muslims vote enbloc. They dont. The Muslims too have huge schisms and divisions and are not a monolithic community. Infact they are no different from anyother caste.
Castes which are two thousand old institution should not abandon their own identity and leaders instead of voting for the tyrant Modi.
After tried all possible propaganda against Modi now these people are taking comfort in Caste and religion equations. But Modi is going to be real winner in this election.(160 seats)