Indian General Election, 1991 (10th Lok Sabha)

General Election 1991

The Mandal-Mandir elections (10th Lok Sabha Election)

In 1990, the last decade of the millennium, India was not only facing economic challenges, it was facing political challenges as well. The 9th Lok Sabha government was terminated and so it was time for the Indian general election,1991 for the 10th Lok Sabha.

The Indian general election,1991 was held in two phases 20th May 1991, 12th and 15th  June, 1991. This was due to the assassination of the Congress leader Rajiv Gandhi. Congress party won the Indian general election,1991 which had 244 seats with a voting share of 35% with the alliance of other parties. 273 seats were needed for the majority in the 10th Lok Sabha from 545 seats.

The Congress leader Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated during the Indian general election,1991. The first round of polling took place on 20th May and the very next day, Rajiv Gandhi’s assassination happened while campaigning in Sriperumbudur, which is one of the largest parliamentary constituencies in Tamil Nadu. In the first phase of polling 211 constituencies took place from 534 constituencies, the remaining constituencies went to polls were postponed until June and finally took place on 12th  and 15th  June.

In the pre-assassination period, Congress performed poorly but post-assassination, Congress gained fairly well response from the voters. P.V Narasimha Rao became the Prime Minister for the 10th Lok Sabha with minority and alliance from other parties.

The 10th Lok Sabha election was pointed on two issues – The Ram Janambhoomi -Babri masjid issue and the Mandal Commission issue. Ram Janambhoomi -Babri Masjid was the issue over the temple and a masjid. This issue was in manifesto for the Bharatiya Janata Party in the 10th Lok Sabha election. V.P Singh’s government implemented the Mandalay commission which gave 27% reservation to the other backward classes (OBCs) in the government jobs and services. Both these issues led to riots and internal violence in the country. Because of these issues, the 10th Lok Sabha is also referred as the ‘Mandal-Mandir ‘elections.

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) under the leadership of Lal Krishna Advani won 120 seats with voting share of 20%. Janata Dal won 69 seats with voting share of 11.7%.  The Communist Party of India won 14 seats with a voting share of only 2% and the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagan party won 11 seats.

Facts of Indian general election, 1991 for the 10th Lok Sabha

  • In 10th Lok Sabha election, electoral participation was 55.71%.
  • There was no election held for 10th  Lok Sabha in Jammu and Kashmir.
  • Punjab had 10th Lok Sabha election in 1992.
  • Punjab and Jammu and Kashmir had total 19 Lok Sabha seats.
  • P.V Narasimha Rao was the second Prime Minister after Lal Bahadur Shastri in Congress from non Nehru-Gandhi family.
  • Voting population was 49.8 crores.
  • 86.3% candidates lost their deposit in the 10 the Lok Sabha election.
  • 8,668 candidates participated in the Indian general election,1991.
  • Shivraj Patil was the speaker of the 10th Lok Sabha.

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