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The Last Fortress of Congress Dominance

The Last Fortress of Congress Dominance
Maharashtra Since the 1990s

  • Suhas Palshikar - Chief Editor of Studies in Indian Politics and Retired Professor of Savitribai Phule Pune University
  • Rajeshwari Deshpande - Professor at the Department of Politics and Public Administration, Savitribai Phule Pune University

December 2020 | 312 pages | SAGE India
Focused mainly on Maharashtra’s politics since the 1990s, The Last Fortress of Congress Dominance also provides its readers a clear view of the historical context and the socio-political forces that have dominated the state since the 1950s. The politics of Maharashtra has been woven around two key factors: the Congress party and the Marathas. Attempts by the Shiv Sena and the BJP to emerge as alternatives to the Congress have had only limited success so far. As the state politics witnesses the transition into a new party system, the book presents a detailed study  on the party system of Maharashtra and situates the analysis in the broader context of crisis of the Marathas and the many distortions of the state’s political economy. 

Aided by rich survey data from the National Election Studies, for all elections since 1996, the book presents a long-term view of the politics of Maharashtra as the state completes 60 years of its existence.
Series Note
Note on Sources
Framework of Congress Dominance
Towards Competitive Politics: 1960s to 1980s
Politics in the times of Congress Decline: Key Themes
Maharashtra’s First Critical Election: 1995
Return of the Congress: 2004 and 2009
Towards BJP’s Shaky Dominance
The Crisis of Maratha Politics
Political Economy of Maharashtra
Footprints of a New Dominance?

Suhas Palshikar

Suhas Palshikar, based in Pune, India, taught political science from 1978 first at SP College, Pune, and later at Savitribai Phule Pune University, Pune (1989–2016). He is co-director of Lokniti, a research programme on comparative democracy, based at CSDS, Delhi, and chief editor of the biannual journal brought out by SAGE, Studies in Indian Politics. He was also the editor of Samaaj Prabodhan Patrika during 1990–2004.He is associated with the National Election Study since the 1996 elections. He has also been involved in various research projects of Lokniti, focusing on study of public opinion in India. He was one of the... More About Author

Rajeshwari Deshpande

Rajeshwari Deshpande is Professor of Politics at Savitribai Phule Pune University, Pune. She was the Indian Council for Cultural Relations visiting professor (Rajiv Gandhi Chair in Contemporary Indian Studies) at the University of Technology, Sydney, in 2014 and UK–India Education and Research Initiative visiting fellow at King’s India Institute, London, in 2012. Her research interests are in areas such as intellectual traditions of Maharashtra, comparative state politics, politics of the urban poor, urban caste–class realities, women’s politics and policies related to social welfare.At present, she is the lead researcher in India for... More About Author

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