Poll 2024 – Voting Choices for the Muslims in Rajasthan

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The India Observer, TIO: In the series of write-ups on the voting choices before the Muslims in India, this is the fifth piece that looks at the political scenario in Rajasthan for the 2024 Lok Sabha poll.

The executive summary of this article is, that despite having 10 percent of the Muslim population, Rajasthan has sent only two Members of Parliament in the last 75 years or so. This subject is of huge national importance regarding how democracy can steamroll 10 percent of the population and the country’s leadership is sleeping over this dark side of democracy.

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There are 25 Lok Sabha constituencies in Rajasthan. Muslims constitute 10% of the population here. Muslim population holds significant electoral importance in approximately 10 Lok Sabha constituencies and 100 assembly seats and they rank as the first to fourth largest voter group. But in the game of numbers subjects like fear, blackmail, hatred deceit, and chancery have overpowered them since 1952, when the first national elections were held in India.

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The constituencies with considerable Muslim votes thrive in Rajasthan are; districts like; Jaipur, Jodhpur, Kota, Bikaner, Nagaur, Sikar, Bhilwara, Ajmer, Dausa, Bharatpur, Alwar, Tonk-Sawai Madhopur, Jhunjhunu, Churu and Jaisalmer.

Muslims having such an electoral muscle lack in political representation from Rajasthan at the Indian Parliament. Even from Jaisalmer, the most Muslim-dominated district in Rajasthan no Muslim candidate has ever been fielded. The same is the case with the Tonk-Sawai Madhopur constituency which has a sizeable Muslim population.

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The situation is so pathetic that Muslims’ share in the Lok Sabha from Rajasthan is merely 0.7%. This is the minimum Muslim representation from a state that has over 10 percent of the population, Statistics say, only two Muslim MPs have been elected from Rajasthan since the 1952 Lok Sabha polls.

The blame game of the poor representation of Muslim MPs from Rajasthan is put on the leadership crisis among the community. The argument given is that Muslims in Rajasthan cannot produce a single Muslim leader who can face the electoral battle. To prove this narrative, the example is given that Muslim candidates have lost by a big margin even in Muslim-dominated districts in most of the elections.

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This defeatist argument has become a gospel of truth that cannot be questioned, however, the real fact is the two national parties i.e. the Congress and the BJP have never shown any commitment to increase Muslim representation in the national and state legislatures. Both the national parties are adopting strategies that do not align with the development needs of the Muslim community. Both Congress and the BJP do not like to groom any Muslim political leader in Rajasthan. As a result, the problems of the community have remained neglected since the coming of democracy in India.

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In Rajasthan, the BJP has never fielded any Muslim candidate for the Lok Sabha elections. In contrast, the Congress has fielded Muslim candidates for the Lok Sabha election many times but has always given tickets to Muslim candidates from the constituencies where they have no chance of winning.

To cut the long story short, in the 2019 election, the BJP had won 21 LS seats out of 25 in Rajasthan.  In the assembly polls, the BJP swept the polls winning 115 of the 199 seats it contested while the Congress came second with 69 seats.

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Muslims in Rajasthan are going to face the Lok Sabha on April 19 and 26 in this background. They have seen mob lynching and other forms of atrocities by the Hindutva thugs. As a result, the choice before Muslims is only Congress and nothing else. To run with the hare and hunt with the hounds would be a bad strategy in making voting choices for the Muslims in Rajasthan.

The phenomenon of poor representation of Muslims from Rajasthan is something worth pondering. It appears that Muslims in Rajasthan are least organized as a community and they are more dependent on the Congress party to help them stand up as a political entity.

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But the Congress for the last 75 years has neglected fooled and blackmailed the Muslims in Rajasthan. They have taken their votes and thrown them to the wolves to fend themselves in the day-to-day battle for survival in India.

It is seen that with less than ten percent electoral muscle, in states like UP, Maharashtra, and Tamil Nadu, many caste groups are calling shots in state-level politics. Why 10 percent Muslims can’t become an electoral player in Rajasthan? This thought has never sunk into the mindset of the Muslims in Rajasthan.

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It is high time that Muslims along with Dalits and other marginalized groups float a regional political party to ameliorate their problems. Taking shelter under any national party cannot give them the strength to fight for their problems which are regional and local.  Perhaps this consciousness among the Muslims to gain electoral strength in the community has not sunk in and they remain a pawn in the electoral game in the state.

The future of Indian Muslims in India is to beat democracy through their democratic strength. It is only through electoral strength Muslims can emerge as a national player in the electoral politics of the country.

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 I have heard many rubbishing this idea, arguing that this will invite backlash from the Hindu community and they may gang up to sideline the Muslims. However, in a deeper analysis, Muslims is they are caught between a rock and a hard place.

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Edited By Adam Rizvi

Curated and Compiled by Humra Kidwai

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Syed Ali Mujtaba

Syed Ali Mujtaba

Syed Ali Mujtaba is a Sr.Journalist, Author based in Chennai, India. Writes frequently for the USA based News Portal, TheIndiaObserver. He is author of the book Soundings on South Asia, New Dawn Press (2005). He can be reached at or TIO, at

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