The year 2018 will be largely dominated by assembly elections. There are 8 states that go to polls this year and most of them are major ones. These polls in fact would be a pre-cursor to the big 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
All the elections to be held in 2018 are expected to be hotly contested battles. The year 2017 ended with elections in Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh, both of which were won by the BJP.
Elections in 2018:
This would be one of the most keenly watched and contested battles. The BJP held this state until it lost to the Congress in 2013. The tenure of the Karnataka legislative assembly ends in May 2018. The state is expected to go to poll by April 2018.
In Karnataka the Congress holds 123 seats while the BJP has 44. The tally of the JD(S) stands at 32. It had won 44 seats but 8 of its MLAs were suspended.
The Shivraj Singh led BJP government would be looking for a fourth term. The BJP currently has 165 seats in the 230 member assembly while the Congress has 57. Elections are expected to be held at the end of this year and the term of the assembly ends in January 2019.
Elections in Rajasthan are expected in November and the term of the assembly comes to an end in January 2019. The Congress which had lost the previous elections will look to make a comeback. In the previous elections, the BJP bagged 163 seats while the Congress managed just 21.
Raman Singh will be seeking a fourth term. In the 2013 elections, the BJP won 50 out of the 90 seats. The Congress had bagged 39.
Polls in Nagaland would be the first in 2018. The state goes to polls in February. The Nagaland Peoples Front (NPF) will campaign to retain power in the state. During the 2013 election, NPF had won 37 seats out of 60 to form the government. BJP could win just 2 seats in 2013 while Congress managed eight.
Ruled by Congress government under Mukul Sangma, elections will be held to the 60 seats in Meghalaya. The BJP has prioritised this state as it would look to enhance its presence in North-East.
The 2013 assembly election in the state saw the Left Front retaining power in the state for a fifth consecutive term as CPI (M) won 49 seats out of 60.
The BJP is hoping to do well in Mizoram following its merger with the Maraland Democratic Front (MDF). The BJP would look to take down the Congress which had won the mandate with 34 seats to form the government in 2013.