If you go by the report of the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR), then the ruling BJP emerged as the favourite party among politicians. The latest report said between 2016 and 2020, around 182 of the 405 re-contesting MLAs, who switched political parties have joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), followed by 38 who joined the Congress and 25 who joined the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS). 

What are the latest findings?

The opposition party Congress ended up losing the highest number of legislators to rivals while the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) seem to have absorbed the maximum MLAs switching sides. Around 10 per cent of 4,036 MLAs in the country switched parties to recontest elections. Out of the 405 MLAs across the states who quit and switched parties, 42 per cent belonged to the Congress, while the BJP came in a distant second with 4.4 per cent.

The ruling BJP emerged as the party of choice for 44.9 per cent of the recontesting MLAs, followed by the Congress with 9.4 per cent. The report released on Thursday studied the election affidavits of 443 MLAs and MPs who switched parties and recontested polls in the past five years. 

According to the study, in the same period, 28 MPs changed sides.  Around 16 states have BJP government.  The report noted that the increase in strength in assemblies helped the party bounce back in states such as Karnataka and Madhya Pradesh. The defection also helped the BJP increase its strength in Rajya Sabha and get clearance in important bills, including the Triple Talaq bill and legislation for effective revocation of Article 370 of the constitution.

As per the study, the Congress, which lost substantial members to the BJP and other parties in the last six years, witnessed the maximum damage as 170 of its MLAs left the party and recontested polls from other parties.

The ADR report stated that the reason behind the defection include the connection between money and muscle, absence of laws on the functioning of parties and the last of honest leaders, among others.

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