AAP's national spread can damage Cong's Muslim vote base

Discussion in 'Politics & Society' started by Vishwarupa, Dec 30, 2013.

  1. Vishwarupa

    Vishwarupa Senior Member Senior Member

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    The Congress has already been deserted by the urban middle classes and the youth, but by outsourcing its battle against the Bharatiya Janata Party’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi to the Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Admi Party, the grand old party could end up inflicting more damage on itself.

    Experts feel such a strategy could further erode Congress’ support base of minorities and scheduled castes, reports Anita Katyal.

    When the Congress was routed in the recently-concluded assembly polls, its leadership however drew solace from its victories in the minority-dominated constituencies of Delhi -- although the party managed to win a meagre eight seats. Of these, four Congress candidates were Muslims with Asif Mohammad Khan winning from Okhla, Chaudhary Mateen Ahmad bagging the Saleempur seat, Hasan Ahmad winning the Mustafabad constituency and Haroon Yusuf emerging victorious in Ballimaran.

    Putting up a brave face despite its defeat in Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan and Delhi, Congress strategists were quick to point to its win in the four Muslim-dominated seats to argue that their party continued to enjoy the confidence of the minority community, which it hopes would further consolidate in its favour in the general elections and prove as a catalyst to halt Modi’s onward march to the national centrestage.

    The Congress, they said, will be the preferred choice of the minorities since it has the geographical spread and the secular credentials to take on the BJP.

    However, these calculations could prove wrong if the recent assembly results and the Congress’ steady decline are anything to go by. There is a growing fear in the Congress that if it depends heavily on Arvind Kejriwal to checkmate Modi in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, the minorities could shift allegiance to the debutant AAP which will be viewed as the party of the future with the potential to contain Modi’s surge.

    “Had there been a fresh election in Delhi, we would have lost the four minority-dominated seats as AAP would be seen to be better placed to tackle the BJP. This would have sent a strong message across the Hindi heartland,” a senior Congress leader told Rediff.com.

    “When the recent assembly elections took place, AAP was a new and untested party. The electorate was not sure how well it would perform. But now that the one-year-old party has proved itself, there is every possibility that it would be taken more seriously by the minorities”, the leader added.

    Although it is not clear the number of seats that AAP is planning to contest in the upcoming general election, it is generally believed that Kejriwal’s party is largely an urban phenomenon and that it can impact the electoral outcomes in about 200-odd urban and semi-urban Lok Sabha constituencies.

    According to the Congress party’s calculations, this would put Modi and AAP in direct confrontation as both parties appeal to the same constituency: the middle class and youth.

    While the BJP has reason to worry, the Congress cannot escape unscathed either. As the party in power, it has borne the brunt of the opposition attack and paid a heavy electoral price for corruption and price rise in the recent assembly elections. The story is unlikely to change in the next few months.

    Besides the fear of losing the minority vote, the Congress is worried that it could face desertion from the scheduled castes (SCs), which have traditionally supported it.

    While the Bahujan Samaj Party has weaned away a large chunk of the SC vote, the recent assembly election proved to be a wake-up call for its chief Mayawati who had toured extensively in the four states.

    The BSP was also hit by the AAP whirlwind in Delhi as the new party won nine of the 12 reserved seats while Mayawati’s party failed to open its account although it was confident of improving on its last tally of two seats. In fact, the BSP’s overall performance was disappointing as it bagged only eight seats as against 17 in the 2008 elections.

    In fact, these election results could well force the BSP to reconsider its decision to have a pre-poll alliance with the Congress in the electorally-crucial state of Uttar Pradesh. While the Samajwadi Party is steadily going downhill, Mayawati is waiting to cash in on the anti-incumbency against the Akhilesh Yadav government.

    However, the BJP has been gaining ground because of the polarisation of the electorate. If AAP also joins the fray, even though its spread is limited, it can damage the BSP.

    Although Mayawati has never been favourable to a pre-poll alliance, the Congress and the BSP could be forced to explore such an arrangement in a bid to consolidate the SCs and minorities. There are murmurs in the Congress about such a tie-up but it’s still early to say if it will eventually fructify.

    If Kejriwal’s AAP decides to spread its wings in the Lok Sabha elections, as it has indicated, the Congress will find itself in further trouble in states like Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan, Delhi, Gujarat, Haryana, Punjab, Uttarakhand, Goa and Himachal Pradesh where it is pitted directly against the BJP. Both the Congress and the BJP will face the heat if the AAP emerges as a serious player in these states as the Delhi experiment has shown that an electorate, disillusioned with mainstream political parties, is willing to put its faith in a new party.

    If these ten states pose a problem for the Congress, the party’s prospects are worse in Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal and Tamil Nadu where it has little or no presence and has to contend with strong regional parties.

    Congress leaders maintain it will not be easy for the fledgling AAP to scale up its operations to the national level in such a short span. “Contesting in a compact place like Delhi is very different from fighting elections in vast Lok Sabha constituencies,” a Congress office bearer told Rediff.com.

    Nevertheless, the nervousness in the Congress is palpable. The party did not give AAP an outside chance in Delhi when it started off but the Congress has been proved wrong. On its part, the BJP will hope that the AAP will concentrate on states where it has negligible presence.

    AAP's national spread can damage Cong's Muslim vote base - Rediff.com India News
     
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  3. kseeker

    kseeker Retired

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  4. aragorn

    aragorn Senior Member Senior Member

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    Congress is playing long game.


    They have created AAP to fight with BJP and NaMo. They know they dont have chance in 2014. by AAP they will try to cut the losses. by 2019 novelty factor of AAP will die and 5-6 years are enough in politics for someone to get exposed. They can come back in 2018 telling everyone that these parties are corrupt and only congress can save India.
     
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  5. VIP

    VIP Ultra Nationalist Senior Member

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    That's true because AAP's presence will only harm Congress a lot. Congress' vote share will be split and will go to AAP only, they won't vote for BJP for sure. BJP needs to retain its vote share, that's it.
     
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  6. TrueSpirit1

    TrueSpirit1 The Nobody Banned

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    Well, my latest conjecture is that AAP has effectively stymied the tide of Modi-wave, both in real-world as well as virtual. Till a month back, I had no doubt about his becoming PM. It was just a matter to time. However:

    That Modi wouldn't become PM now, appears to be a foregone conclusion. BJP has already lost enough fence-sitters (voters) across the cities to AAP. This would make all the difference in LS elctions.

    At least, that is the perspective I have acquired from my random interactions in IT industry. Many are willing to join the party as volunteers. I do not even indulge the politically immature ones, anymore. However, the is still a significant mass (mid-senior level professionals) who are somewhat cognizant of Indian political history & the various movements. They understand the Indian ethos as well as need of the hour. They are quite resolute in their understanding.

    Quite expectedly, even my friends in Army are highly enthused by rise of AAP & have been categorically endorsing it. This is marked change from their earlier positions which was completely pro-Modi until recently. It is another matter that these young officers are not informed enough about the political climate (limited communication lines), so they are especially prone to be swayed by any emerging wind-of-positive-change.

    Whenever we manage to have a lengthy discussion, I try to appraise them of the bigger picture so that they can take an informed decision. Rest is for them to decide. However, their views doesn't matter much since they are themselves not sure if any of them can actually cast their ballot, given their postings/frequent movements/exercises etc.
     
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  7. VIP

    VIP Ultra Nationalist Senior Member

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    This is just matter of time. AAP has done nothing till now, media is giving them coverage because they have been ordered to do so. Let media be against them, they would vanish in no time. Nobody's talking about BJP's win in other 3 states but 28 seats of AAP in delhi. Again, delhi is not the India, IT industry is not that prominent, what about commercial areas ?? Nobody likes them there in the market.
     
  8. TrueSpirit1

    TrueSpirit1 The Nobody Banned

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    No, it wont. Congress was doomed, anyway. With or without AAP

    But what AAP has done when it came on the scene is to ensconce the Con-party into Kingmaker's role. This happened in Delhi.

    This would replicate at the Center.

    *********************************************************************************************************************************************

    P.S. I wish my countrymen would prove me widely off-the-mark.
     
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  9. TrueSpirit1

    TrueSpirit1 The Nobody Banned

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    Read this post from Parijataka:

    I endorse this view.
     
  10. VIP

    VIP Ultra Nationalist Senior Member

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    Why you all think that Delhi assembly elections will affect LS polls a lot. LS seats have very large area base, candidates win with big margins, AAP's not gonna have that. AAP may get some LS seats buy not in other states. They have zero presence in other states, even in delhi volunteers came from other states, they cannot fight in all seats of LS and if they try to do that, they can't get amount of workers they have.
     
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  11. TrueSpirit1

    TrueSpirit1 The Nobody Banned

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    I completely agree with you that LS elections shouldn't be solely viewed from Delhi elections' angle, but the unusual enthusiasm displayed by totally apolitical people (IT folks, Army-guys etc.) makes me sit up & take notice. The groundswell in favour of AAP is really swelling like a tide.

    Irrespective of organizational issues (i.e. AAP's obvious limitations of nationwide scale, connect, reach & influence), sometimes, an IDEA is bigger than the ORAGANIZATION.

    It doesn't really help that increasing no. of people have actually chosen to believe AAP's IDEA of CHANGE.

    Lets wait and watch.
     
  12. VIP

    VIP Ultra Nationalist Senior Member

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    That fear is unnecessary. BJP won 3 states and also retained vote share on Delhi, they only need to retain this voteshare, that's it. AAP is no big threat. Delhi BJP has no good leaders since a decade, they screwed up very badly, I have been saying tbis before elections, even BJP's getting 31 seats is also a miracle.
     
  13. rock127

    rock127 Maulana Rockullah Senior Member

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    First lets see what AAP delivers when Congis are hell bent on putting blockades in front of them.
     
  14. VIP

    VIP Ultra Nationalist Senior Member

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    Everyone would always agree with new and clean idea when old man has already put the nation in hole of shit. I was very much impressed by AK but his party when declared manifesto, it reminds me the ultimate left revolution. They're hitting the point of corruption and trying to win the vote but when people will get the real face of em, they won't accept them anymore. Just like CPIs
     
  15. Shirman

    Shirman Regular Member

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    2014: Electoral math – part 2

    By Minhaz Merchant
    Friday December 13, 2013, 04:48 PM

    The state assembly results in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh and Delhi carry a grim message for the Congress. But worse news could lie ahead. Consider the party’s prospects for the 2014 general election.

    The Congress faces a wipeout in 10 of India’s largest states: Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, Punjab and Tamil Nadu.

    Its Lok Sabha tally in these 10 major states is currently 127 seats (AP 33, Bihar 2, Gujarat 11, MP 12, Odisha 6, Punjab 8, Rajasthan 20, Tamil Nadu 8, UP 21, and W. Bengal 6). In 2014, most estimates project the party’s likely tally in these 10 states at between 30 and 35 seats with big losses in the Hindi heartland and Andhra.

    The only large states where the Congress is likely to cross 10 seats in the 2014 Lok Sabha election are Maharashtra and Karnataka. Among the mid-sized states, Haryana and Assam present an opportunity to the Congress but the Hooda administration’s misgovernance and the Gogoi government’s handling of the 2012 riots may exact a price.

    If Arvind Kejriwal’s Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) decides to contest the Lok Sabha poll in Haryana, the Congress could be in trouble. Victories in smaller states like Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and those in the north-east offer limited seat numbers in the Lok Sabha.

    Kerala meanwhile faces serious anti-incumbency while Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh offer little electoral hope to the Congress.

    Now consider the math:

    Tier 1: In the 10 large states mentioned above, the Congress’s tally is likely to be 30-35 seats.

    Tier 2: Maharashtra and Karnataka could together contribute 20-25 seats.

    Tier 3: In the mid-sized and small states, the Congress could drum up at most another 25-30 seats.

    Taking the higher figure in each category, the Congress’s 2014 Lok Sabha tally could hover around 90. At that level its strategy to attract allies like the TRS or YSR in Andhra, SP or BSP in Uttar Pradesh, RJD or JD(U) in Bihar and the Left or TMC in West Bengal may falter.

    The numbers such a front could muster (without regional rival overlaps) are unlikely to be more than 90-100. A coalition of the Congress and a regional front with less than 200 Lok Sabha seats between them can hardly be the basis for a stable government.

    The bad news for the Congress doesn’t end there. The only two major allies left in UPA-2 – NCP and NC, which currently have 11 Lok Sabha seats between them – are also likely to bleed seats in 2014. Former ally DMK has begun to distance itself from the Congress with M.K. Stalin, Karunanidhi’s heir, strongly opposed to any alliance with its estranged partner.

    Moreover, several states go to the polls in assembly elections in 2014 and 2015 – among them Maharashtra, Bihar, Haryana and Jammu & Kashmir.

    If the Congress loses the Maharashtra and Haryana assemblies – both of which appear possible – it will be in power in 2015 in just one large state (Karnataka), one mid-sized state (Assam) and a smattering of small states (Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand) and a handful in the north-east, including Arunachal.

    Kerala could slip from its grasp in 2016 when assembly elections are due and, if bifurcated, Andhra will elect local non-Congress governments from the TRS and YSR/TDP in Telangana and Seemandhra respectively when fresh assembly elections are held there.

    Out of power in 2014 at the Centre and out of power in virtually every significant state by 2016: this is a prospect the Congress must confront sooner rather than later.

    Is there a way back from the precipice? Only if the party develops strong state leaders and grassroots organizations. Too much dynasty, too much centralized power and too much hubris have led the Congress into a cul de sac where it has only two options: revamp the way it conducts its politics or be marginalized as a political force.

    Mani Shankar Aiyar, making a virtue out of a necessity, says a spell in the opposition will do the Congress good. It might. But if by the time the 2019 Lok Sabha election arrives and the Congress is in power in only one or two large states, cadre morale will slump even further.

    * * *

    What about the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP)? Will it draw voters away from the Modi wave that even Congress acolytes are now grudgingly calling a ripple? Will AAP be a factor at all in the 2014 parliamentary elections?

    A repoll in the hung Delhi assembly election will pin Arvind Kejriwal down to the NCR till the re-election is over. As an elected Delhi MLA, if he contests and wins a seat in the Lok Sabha poll, he would have to resign either his assembly or parliament seat within six months. To step down as an MLA within months of being elected would not go down well with AAP voters in Delhi who elected him to serve the assembly. (The same principle would apply to Narendra Modi too – but that would be after having served the state assembly for nearly 12 years.)

    Statistics show that AAP took 6 out of 100 BJP votes and 36 out of 100 Congress votes in the Delhi assembly election. Even if it contests in a handful of NCR (and perhaps Bangalore) Lok Sabha seats, AAP is unlikely to draw significant votes from the BJP to allow a Third Front-Congress option.

    In the final analysis, Uttar Pradesh and its 39 million Muslims could hold the key to 2014. However, no party can any longer take the Muslim vote for granted.

    As A.K. Verma, who teaches politics at Christ Church College in Kanpur, wrote recently in The Economic Times: “There is a Muslim-OBC angle too. Many Muslims like Ansaris, Quraishis, Momins, Fakir and Muslim-Kayasthas are in the OBC list in UP. If the OBC character of Modi gets played up during the campaign, some Muslim OBCs may move towards Modi. Though Modi is focused on development, the BJP may highlight his OBC profile as polls draw closer. Mobilisation of a small segment of OBCs, both Hindus and Muslims, in favour of Modi, may prove to be his trump card.”

    Will that be enough to power the BJP to over 272 seats, along with pre- and post-poll allies? Who might these allies be? How do the numbers stack up nationally as we enter the final 150-day stretch of the 2014 Lok Sabha campaign? That and more in part 3.
     
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  16. Shirman

    Shirman Regular Member

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    2014: Electoral math – part 3
    Minhaz Merchant

    27 December 2013, 04:12 PM IST

    Two outcomes are possible in the 2014 Lok Sabha election. First, a BJP-led NDA government. Second, a Third Front government supported by the Congress-led UPA.

    The emergence of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has meanwhile altered the arithmetic. But can AAP skim enough voteshare away from the Congress and the BJP in areas where door-to-door campaigns, so effective in Delhi, are not feasible?

    In urban areas, AAP will cut into Congress voteshare significantly. It will also cut into BJP voteshare in cities such as Bangalore and Delhi. But the damage done to the BJP will be limited. As we saw in the Delhi assembly elections, for every 6 votes out of 100 that the BJP lost to AAP, the Congress lost 36 votes out of 100. A similar pattern could be witnessed in the Lok Sabha poll.

    Taking the average of most opinion poll estimates, this is how the 2014 Lok Sabha seat numbers stack up for the Congress, its remaining UPA allies, the BJP, its NDA allies and regional parties which comprise a putative Third Front (“others” include small regional parties and AAP; for the purpose of this analysis, Andhra Pradesh is treated as undivided):

    Congress: 90.

    UPA allies: 15 (NCP 5, NC 2, Others 8).

    Total UPA: 105

    Third Front:

    Left Front: 27

    BSP: 25

    RJD: 12

    TRS: 13

    BJD: 12

    AIADMK: 28

    Others: 4

    Total Third Front: 121

    Thus UPA (105) + Third Front (121): 226.

    Possible outside support: SP (15), JDU (8): 23

    Total Third Front + UPA: 249

    TMC (25) would not lend outside support to this coalition due to the Left Front’s presence. YSR (14) similarly would stay away due to TRS. DMK (7) would be out because of AIADMK. Only SP (15) and JDU (8) in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar respectively may swallow their pride and lend outside support to the Third Front-UPA government despite BSP and RJD being part of the patchwork coalition.

    Outcome: at 249 seats with ambivalent outside support from SP/JDU and 226 seats otherwise, Third Front + UPA would be well short of a simple majority.

    * * *

    The second possible outcome is a BJP-led NDA government. What do the Narendra Modi-led BJP numbers look like? Here’s a state-wise estimate, broken up into four tiers for coherence:

    1st Tier:

    Gujarat: 24
    Madhya Pradesh: 25
    Rajasthan: 23
    Total: 72

    2nd Tier:

    4. Uttar Pradesh: 35

    5. Bihar: 18

    6. Maharashtra: 17

    Total: 70

    3rd Tier:

    7. Chhattisgarh: 8

    8. Jharkhand: 7

    9. Karnataka: 15

    Total: 30

    4th Tier:

    10. Delhi: 6

    11. Haryana: 5

    12. Punjab: 3

    13. Uttarakhand: 5

    14. Himachal: 3

    15. Goa: 2

    16. Assam: 3

    17. Andhra Pradesh: 6

    18. West Bengal: 1

    19. Odisha: 1

    20. Tamil Nadu: 1

    Total: 36

    BJP Total: 208 seats from 20 states as detailed above plus 24 seats from the remaining 15 states/UTs: 232.

    Pre-poll NDA allies would add another 42 seats (Shiv Sena 15, Shiromani Akali Dal 7, TDP 8, Others and Independents 12).

    Total NDA 232+42: 274.

    Once the NDA crosses the majority threshold and TF-Congress numbers fall short, regional parties, which would have flirted with a Third Front, could gravitate towards the NDA as post-poll allies to give the government a larger majority. These include AIADMK and YSR with a likely tally of 42 Lok Sabha seats between them. That would take the NDA to 316 seats (274+42).

    * * *

    And yet, to achieve these numbers, Modi needs to reorient his own campaign. He must increasingly focus on issues and his economic and foreign policy vision. At rallies, along with speaking on local issues, at least one thematic idea based on solutions (power, infra, agriculture, education, healthcare, monetary policy, terrorism) must be highlighted.

    Criticism of dynastic politics and specific cases of Congress corruption can and should legitimately form a part of Modi’s campaign speeches. But a positive, solution-oriented focus must henceforth lie at the heart of each speech.

    Only then will a wave gather the force necessary to carry the NDA to power.

    Follow @Minhazmerchant on twitter
     
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  17. parijataka

    parijataka Senior Member Senior Member

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    Vote for AAP will be vote for Congress or Third Front period.

    AAP enthusiasts might recreate Delhi Assembly situation nation wide in 2014.
     
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  18. TrueSpirit1

    TrueSpirit1 The Nobody Banned

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    What is Muslim-Kayastha, exactly ? Isn't there an inherent-contradiction in the term ?

    @Singh @Virendra @pmaitra @bose @arnabmit

    Ever heard this before:Muslim-Kayasthas ? How can one remain Kayastha after adopting Islam ?

    Anyway, Kayastha have always been the uber-elite of society, even much before independence.

    Does someone actually believes that some of the Kayasthas adopted Islam, still remained Kayastha & then, moved on to become OBC (from their earlier General status) ? :rotfl:
     
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  19. anoop_mig25

    anoop_mig25 Senior Member Senior Member

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    Only two secarions is possible either it would rag-tag colation of third front supported by congress or it would bjp led NDA

    APP would win but not beyond delhi or ncr .

    I doubt they would win election in any other big city .for eg mumbai i doubt they would win here

    they might win in banglore
     
  20. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    The Muslims have voted for the Congress and realised that they voted in false promises and nothing more.

    They will vector to the AAP as Kamal Farooqi has done.

    The Congress will lose the Muslim votes, while the BJP will lose the votes of Hindus who are rather embarrassed at the public perception of Modi vis a vis his alleged non secular image.

    And the irony is that all, irrespective of community or religion, want a stable and a strong govt that can deliver than a mish mash of populist claptrap seen so far.
     
  21. Virendra

    Virendra Moderator Moderator

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    I don't have a lot of information on Kayasthas. From whatever I know, kayastha do not seem to have been considered core elite but are a unique group of people.
    This is a community that didn't fall into any of the broad vedic varnas and is specialization/occupation based. Their skills were not easily replicatable in the remaining society.
    Most of the Kayasthas were excellent professionals who rendered their services in Royal Courts. Due to the nature of their job, many were gatekeepers of State secrets and sometimes even played pivot roles in sabotage, rebellions, political/succession wars etc.
    As their work kept them entwined in Royal Courts under the nose of the King the time; upheavels in Indian polity after arrival of Islamic powers might have caused many of them to change religion per the flow of the wind. I'd call it occupational hazard.

    It is not surprising that so many of the Indian communities that have borne the brunt of conversions are always more than eager to reflect and show off their Hindu characterstics as well. It is there way to still prove a link to the Indic roots. Such communities also cannot afford to antagonize their Muslim peers. A strange and awkward case, above all for them.
    Even today you can easily find common surnames in Hindu and Muslim families because the community in question was bifurcated into those who converted and the ones who didn't.
    So yes, theoritically you can say that this shouldn't happen. But people do not always play by the rules. It is hard to cut the Indic roots.
    But how much the society accepts these attempts of mending is an open question. After all ours is a traditional society.
    Yet a totalitrian and exclusive society would have banished and herded such people into acceptable norms. It wouldn't let them sit on the fence between two religions. But this is liberal and tolerant India.

    Coming to the OBC part, I thought that Kayasthas were generally better educated because of their work profile and all. Being close to the ruling powers means that they would sense the changing trends before anyone else. So I'd think they would've adoped modern education under the British swiftly. I don't see how they would become OBCs. Perhaps someone else might throw more light.

    Regards,
    Virendra
     
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