By Mitali Perkins

Pressured to accompany her mom to India in the course of summer season holiday, Jasmine ""Jazz"" Gardner, homesick and lacking her ally Steve, abruptly discovers the magic of monsoon season while she befriends a bothered lady and volunteers at a neighborhood orphanage.

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Of these, 37 seats were gained in Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh alone. The fact that both these states had completed polling by the third phase explains the huge gains made by the NDA in the initial phases of polling, rather than any so-called Kargil effect. It must be emphasised that the BJP–Shiv Sena (the BJP’s oldest ally in the NDA) alliance lost a substantial chunk of its vote share in Maharashtra, but gained seats thanks to the split in the Congress on the eve of elections. Similarly, in Andhra Pradesh, the BJP and the TDP put together could not improve on their vote share between 1998 and 1999, while the Congress did—but not enough to counteract the consolidation of votes on the other side.

The second trend that was arrested was the fall in the share of votes obtained by the Congress. The party’s vote share had gone up by nearly 3 per cent between 1998 and 1999 though it lost nearly 30 seats in the Lok Sabha thanks to the ‘first-past-the-post’ principle. The support of the Congress was evidently spread relatively thinly 54 DIVIDED WE STAND across the country whereas the BJP’s support base was concentrated in particular geographical regions, enabling the party to win more seats in the Lok Sabha even with a lower share of the popular vote.

If Kargil did indeed boost the prospects of the NDA, why did the alliance sweep Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Delhi (winning all 21 seats in these states) while, at the same time, being very nearly wiped out in neighbouring Punjab (winning just 3 of the 13 seats in the state) which borders Pakistan? Why did the BJP and its allies win 36 of the 42 Lok Sabha seats in Andhra Pradesh, but only 10 of the 28 seats in Karnataka, where they had won 16 seats in the previous Introduction 57 elections in 1998?

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