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Madhya Pradesh (MP) Infographic

Madhya Pradesh : Heartland Politics

Known as the heart of India, Madhya Pradesh is situated right at the centre of the country. It is the second largest state of India and has a unicameral government. The Legislative Assembly of Madhya Pradesh consists of 230 members (MLAs).
At the Centre, the state sends 29 members to the Lok Sabha and 11 members to the Rajya Sabha. The major political parties in Madhya Pradesh are the Indian National Congress (INC), the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP.) The regional parties are yet to make their mark in the state.

Chief Ministers in the state

Name: Shivraj Singh Chouhan
Party: BJP
Tenure: November 2005 till now
Shivraj Singh Chouhan was born into a farmer family. A gold medallist in Philosophy, Shivraj Chouhan has been a political leader since childhood. In 1976-77, he participated in underground movement against Emergency and was imprisoned. He has always taken part in various political agitations and fought for public causes. In 1990, he was elected to the state Legislative Assembly from the Budhni constituency. In 1990, he became a member of the 10th Lok Sabha from Vidisha constituency. He was re-elected to the 11th and 14th Lok Sabha from the same constituency. In 2005, he was appointed as the BJP President, Madhya Pradesh and in the same year, he went on to become the Chief Minister of the state. In 2008 Assembly elections, he once again led the party to victory in the state elections and assumed the position of Chief Minister for the second time.

As the Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh, Chouhan has been focussing on improving education, generating employment, uplifting the scheduled castes, rehabilitating the slums, among other initiatives. He has always been a supporter of women empowerment and has undertaken several steps to protect the girl child, improve the health and socio-economic security of women.

Shivraj Chouhan has few corruption charges levelled against him. In few cases, he has been given a clean chit but some cases are still pending. Like for instance, in July 2014, former Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh, Digvijay Singh, issued a letter to him alleging that Shivraj Chouhan favoured his brother-in-law. This case is still pending.

  Name: Digvijay Singh
Party: INC
Tenure: 1993-1998; 1998-2003
Digvijay Singh is a member of the Rajya Sabha and the General Secretary of Indian National Congress.  It was in 1970 that Digvijay Singh joined the Congress party. In 1977, he won from the Raghogarh Vidhan Sabha constituency and became the member of the Madhya Pradesh Legislative Assembly.  He was later re-elected from the same constituency and went on to become the minister of state and later a cabinet minister in the state government. He then became the president of Madhya Pradesh Congress Committee and continued to be in this post during the years 1985-1988. In 1984, he was elected as the member of the Lok Sabha from the Rajgarh constituency. He lost the seat in 1989 but regained it once again in 1991. In 1993, he was appointed as the Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh.  In 1998, he emerged victorious and went on to serve the second term.

The Digvijay Singh stints in power are known for educational reforms in the state, where he built numerous village schools. His reforms are said to be behind the increase in the literacy rate in the state, especially among the girls. He is also hailed for redistributing common grazing grounds among landless dalits, providing free electricity to farmers, promoting Panchayati Raj to delegate more powers to the villages and introducing a Supplier Diversity scheme that ensured that 30 percent of the government supplies will be procured from the disadvantaged groups.

He has been known for his critical views especially in the Batla House case, where Digvijay Singh said that the encounter, where two terrorists and one police officer died, was a staged one. The Congress rejected his views and distanced itself from the controversy. Apart from this in 2014, he was in news for his link-up with a TV journalist Amrita Rai. Digivijay Singh later admitted the relationship and is planning to get married to the journalist once her divorce comes through.

Economy of MP

As per the Madhya Pradesh Economic Survey 2013-14, the Gross State Domestic Product has increased by 11.08 percent. The state is rich in natural resources - agriculture, fuels and minerals. It also has the largest reserves of diamond and copper in India. The state has attractive fiscal and policy incentives for businesses under the Industrial Promotion Policy, 2010 & Action Plan and also polices for tourism, IT, biotechnology and special economic zones. In 2013-14, the agriculture sector grew to 22.43 from 20.44 percent in 2012-2013. In the same period, the industrial sector showed a growth of 2.15 percent while the services sector grew by 9.54 percent.


Tourism of Madhya Pradesh

Tourism is one of the top priority sectors for the state government. With its hill ranges and splendid beauty, the state attracts one and all. The tourism industry has seen tremendous growth and in the year 2010-11 won the National Tourism Awards.  In 2013, it became the first state to completely utilise the funds released to the state by the Union Ministry of Tourism.  The funds have been used to develop tourist destinations like Chitrakoot, Mandu, Betul, Vidisha, Handia, Shivpuri, Mandasaur, Burhanpur, Indra Sagar, Datia and Maheshwar. This has led to the increase in the number of tourists visiting the state – both domestic and international. In a similar fashion, now the government plans to develop other tourist destinations like Nemawar, Indore, Noorabad, Nagoe-Maihar, where integrated development is being pondered upon.

Voters’ Behaviour in MP

In a pre-poll survey conducted by Lokniti - Programme for Comparative Democracy in 2013, about 93.5 percent of the people were upbeat about the election and wanted to vote.  About 55 percent were confident that they would vote and 56.9 percent had preferred to vote for BJP. In 2008 too, majority had preferred BJP.  About 27.3 percent gave preference to the party over the candidate, while 30 percent decided on the party, based on the candidate.  As many as 76 percent were satisfied with the BJP’s performance in the state. Price rise turned out to be a major concern among the people. The survey was conducted among 2868 people before the General Elections in 2013.

Education in Madhya Pradesh

As per the Census data 2011, the literacy rate in Madhya Pradesh was registered at 70 percent. The male literacy rate grew to 80.5 percent while the female literacy rate grew to 60 percent. The state has about 12 medical colleges, 220 engineering colleges and about 211 management institutes.

Unemployment in MP

The unemployment rate per 1000 persons aged more than 15 years was at 22 in Madhya Pradesh.  The rural unemployment rate in Madhya Pradesh was among the lowest in 2011-12.

MP Airports

There are about six airports that are considered to be of prime importance in Madhya Pradesh. Out of these, the Devi Ahilyabai Holkar Airport in Indore is supposed to be the busiest airport while Khajuraho Airport, Raja Bhoj in Gwalior, Gwalior Airport and Jabalpur Airport operate commercial flights. Besides these, there are minor airstrips located at Satna, Ujjain, Rewa and Khandwa. More airports and flights are in the pipeline. The aim is to connect almost all the cities with the state capital Raipur.

Road and Infrastructure in MP

Madhya Pradesh can boast of a good network of roads. There are about 20 national highways in the state stretching to about 3,714 kilometres and several state highways making up to roughly 8,728 kilometres. The transport department of the state is highly computerised, thus providing the entire road transport related services online.

Poverty in MP

Madhya Pradesh has managed to bring down its poverty level significantly over the past few years. From 2004-05 to 2009-10, there has been a fall of about 12 percent in the poverty level. The reduction in poverty in the rural as well urban areas remains somewhat similar. During this period, about 13 lakh families have moved above the poverty line. This improvement is mainly attributed to the augmentation of irrigation facilities, increase in the agricultural products, continuous supply of power to factories and industries and initiation and implementation of efficient rural development schemes.

Health and Sanitation

The sanitation scenario in Madhya Pradesh has improved a lot over the years. A total sanitation campaign was launched in the village, Tarawata, in Guna district. The people in the village were educated on the importance of cleanliness and embracing sanitary habits. Today, the village has no litter, no flies, no scattered cow dung, and the best bit is that all the houses in the village have toilets. Initially, it was difficult to change the mind-set of the people and to convince them to use toilets. However, over a period of time, people began to understand the importance of having exclusive toilets and adopted the new system. The improvement in the sanitation has managed to raise the health index of this district. Now, the government intends to replicate this model in other districts as well.

Crime rate

Crime rate continues to be high in Madhya Pradesh as it retains the top position as a state where the largest number of rapes are committed. The data released by the National Crime Record Bureau in 2013, show that while rapes have increased, rape among children have also been on the rise.  In 2012, the total number of rape incidents against children stood at 1,632, while in 2012 it was at 1,262 - a rise of 29.31 percent.

Social Security

Crime against women has also been on the rise in Madhya Pradesh.  The total cases of crime registered in 2011 were at 16,599 while in 2012, the cases stood at 16,832 – a rise of about 1.4 percent, thus contributing 6.89 percent of crimes against women in the country. Indore appears to be the worst city when it comes to crimes against women. The city recorded 922 cases of crime against women and 270 cases of child rapes in 2012. Indore was followed by Bhopal and Gwalior.

Last Updated on December 2, 2014