Author of controversial paper on 2019 poll quits university

Weeks after a scholarly paper he wrote about the 2019 election results set off a political firestorm, Sabyasachi Das, an assistant professor of economics at Ashoka University, has resigned from his position at the private university based in Sonepat, Haryana, reports The Wire. His resignation was confirmed to The Wire by at least two faculty members, but there has been no official statement from the university yet.

The economist has been in the news for a paper he wrote alleging the possibility of electoral ‘manipulation’ in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, where the incumbent BJP rode back to power with a greater margin than in 2014. While Das stressed that the methods and impact he looked at in his 25 July 2023 paper – “Democratic Backsliding in the World’s Largest Democracy” – were confined to just 11 seats, his study generated spirited commentary on social media. Bharatiya Janata Party leaders also attacked the scholar’s findings.

On 1 August, matters heated up when Ashoka University issued a statement distancing itself from Das’ paper, saying it was dismayed by the speculation and debate it had generated.
Full report on The Wire site