The Exit poll forecast may go wrong

If Congress is dreaming of victories in the current round in Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, and Rajasthan, it’s more because of the anti-incumbency against the sitting governments

There is on a rough average about 100% increase in Congress seats compared to previous assembly elections.
There is on a rough average about 100% increase in Congress seats compared to previous assembly elections.

The question is that how much credibility Congress party and its candidate is left with given their track record of past governance

Some English Channels have conducted Exit-poll in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, the BJP governed states and have forecast comfortable victory for Congress in Rajasthan, an edge for Congress in a tight fight in Madhya Pradesh and in Chhattisgarh with higher numbers of seats for Congress. There is on a rough average about 100% increase in Congress seats compared to previous assembly elections.

Committed voters are not too many but the non-committed voters who perhaps form the bulk of voters are more concerned whether they can trust the candidate to deliver his or her promises.

This follows their narrative of high anti-incumbency trend observed in these three states. And, since Rajasthan in the past two decades has witnessed alternative Congress and BJP governments after every term, there is a common perception among the public that these elections will follow the same trend.

This scientific analysis of political elections is based on statistics which requires a psephologist to have a good understanding of the demographic patterns of the region, caste dynamics, working groups and important issues in the preceding elections coupled with a sharp political sense. The scope of such professionals encompasses analysis of aspects like trends in voting, swings in votes, number of votes polled or percentage of total votes polled translating into the number of seats in the government. Based on this data, a psephologist infers the outcome of the public opinion manifested in the form of elections.

But, the real problem with Exit poll survey is that it targets very few (just 5000 to 10000) voters which may not be representative of the entire population. Due to the small sample size, even a slight error gets exacerbated and can disproportionately influence outcomes. Plus, these polls are designed to estimate vote share by party, not the seat share and converting vote share data to seat share in each constituency is tricky especially in a multi-cornered, first-past-the-post fight at the constituency level.

We may note here two important trends or factors generally influencing the voter’s preference. First, the existence of committed voters as per caste and party affiliation. Secondly, the profile of the party and or the individual candidate as perceived by the voter and based on which he or she reposes faith and confidence on the candidate. Committed voters are not too many but the non-committed voters who perhaps form the bulk of voters are more concerned whether they can trust the candidate to deliver his or her promises.

In 1993, Congress ruled as many as 16 states. And even as late as 2014, when Modi became prime minister, it could boast of 13 chief ministers

The above three state elections have been fought mainly between BJP and Congress. Given the anti-incumbency for BJP, the non-committed voters will look at the credibility of Congress party and its candidate. Now the question is that how much credibility Congress party and its candidate is left with given their track record of past governance while in government and present performance and discharge of responsibility as opposition.

Congress could not reconcile itself to its hugely diminished status in India as a political enterprise. Yet the party continues with the self-satisfied pretension of being the only one that can shape India’s destiny. The party refuses to see its dismal scorecard in all respects of governance and especially with regard to corrupt practices as no more than an arithmetical aberration: In 1993, Congress ruled as many as 16 states. And even as late as 2014, when Modi became prime minister, it could boast of 13 chief ministers. Today, it rules only Punjab, Mizoram, Puducherry and Karnataka (in alliance with JD-S).

If Congress is dreaming of victories in the current round in Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, and Rajasthan, it’s more because of the anti-incumbency against the sitting governments than because of any great resurgence on the part of Congress.

The voters are very much aware of all this and therefore have no reason to repose their trust on Congress in these elections. The existence of local issues, if any, are not likely to override this mistrust.

Note:
1. The views expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of PGurus.

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13 COMMENTS

  1. Karj Mafi loan waiver to farmers within 10 days will bring win for Congress ,they won with the help of 2008 loan waiver ,they may try it again ,there should be a public debate and law be enforced stopping such economic hazard , instead irrigation and water should be made available in nook and corner of the country and farm produce should be purchased by government ,import of agricultural products should be discouraged , Mediclaim system should be simplified , education should be more informative and research oriented and we should learn basics . More houses and better cleanliness people should try for .

  2. Committed voters for Khan-grace is higher vis-a-vis BJP. A high percentage of Jihadist supports + Church remote-controlled electorate will vote for Khan-grace – come what may. BJP voters are largely Hindu voters – but atleast 30% are susceptible to swings. For eg., (1) in 1984 – huge chunk of traditional-voters voted for Khan-grace (as BJP voters think nation first and party next. In 1984 Khalistani Militancy – Pak sponsored was not liked by BJP voters and to ensure a strong Govt., largely shifted to Rajiv Gandhi (who started with a clean slate). (2) After 1992 – dismissed BJP Governments were not voted back – in MP and Rajasthan (as till then power used to alternate 5 years (3) In 2009 – significant BJP voters shifted to UPA due to the Pak perceived threat looming larger (due to 26/11) and also for being in US good books on NUclear deal. – Similar scenario was witnessed in 1971. (4) Let us take example of Kerala – the swing of voters is only in Hindu votes – whichever way the swing sways LDF or UDF will win. (core Kerala Congress/IUML always static in respective camps. (5) Summany – Hindu voters are subject to Swing factor while Jihadi supports/Church remote controlled are not.

  3. Modi has completely failed in delivering basic promises.

    1) When crude prices were low its benefits were not passed to people, but when they were high we have to pay for that. Price-rise was his major concern in 2014.
    2) Despite a catastrophe called Demonetization recovery of black money in past 50+ months is negligible. He talked most against Blaxk money in 2014.
    3) There is no Ram Mandir and its still for Tomorrow. I think this is a 25 yr old issue.
    4) No major achievement on joblessness. One must remember that last UPA regime had to deal with global recession of 2008 in its latter years. Modi failed here also.
    5) Even in case of Pakistan we ended up with Pathankot. Here he made a mess.
    This list is endless……

    Look at Mahatir in Malaysia, how he acted against corrupt within 6 months of coming to power. Look at Trump. But, Modi is going after corrupt in the last 6 months just before next election. Most will think its a pressure tactic.

    I really want Modi to lose these elections miserably so that he gets back to his senses. After reaching Delhi he is following Lutyens system, which is to make deals to stay in power rather than to fulfill promises.

    If BJP loses this time, then only Modi-Shah will understand that to win elections consistently they will have to deliver promptly. You can’t follow policies that deliver results after 10 yrs, then people will also give their votes after 10 years.

    • It is unfair to say BJP did not perform. Modi sarkar did structural reforms which corrupt parties like congress can never do (esp DEMO). Local issues dominate in state elections and anti-incumbency plays a role as well. Every state differs. This logic of people voted for the opposition because BJP did not pursue the corrupt vigorously is flawed. It is like saying people voted back the same corrupt gang of criminals since BJP failed to put them in jail.

  4. Let us analyse it without political bias. In case of non-committed voters, particularly youth new voters won’t even remember Congress rule in MP & Chattisgarh because they were kids 3-8 years, when Congress ruled. For them Employment, Economic Growth, etc could be the issue in broader perspective. If they are dissatisfied or bored with the present regime they could vote against. Even the local MLAs performance could matter a lot among non-committed voters inspite of their overall satisfaction with the present CMs performance. Analyzing a thing with emotional bias will never yield a right result.

  5. This article is only a wishful thinking that people will not forget corruption of congress and vote for BJP. The public memory is very short. The ruling dispensation cannot explain its non performance for the last 15 years in MP and Chattisgarh. The situation in Rajasthan is appalling. Why should BJP stick on with non performing Vasundhara. The public mood at the moment of election is of great importance. There is only rhetoric in BJP no action non performance. MSP for agri produce is 150% of cost of production, but the farmer sells his onion for 1000/750 kg just 1.40 per kg.

  6. Congress has been synonymous for Conspiracies, Chaos, and Corruption Since 1942. They further ‘decorated’ it with added anti-national overtures, insulted armed forces, used abusive langugage so aggressively & rampantly that it looked as if every spokesperson who opened his/her mouth was in competition and trying to outdo any & everyone else in the party. Sanity still prevails among people in India. Anyone voting for CCC certainly does not belong to group of sanes!

  7. Congress will WIN the 3 states not because it deserves to win but BJP needs to learns it’s lessons. Quickly too from Dr. Swamy.
    1. Fast track corruption cases and put them behind bars – including any corrupt leaders from BJP.
    2. Move an Ordinance and start building Shri Ram Temple in Ayodhya within 2 months
    3. Move an Ordinance and remove article 370
    4. Promise review of entire ‘Reservation’ non-sense and clean it up to make it financial based for needy families irrespective of caste / religion.
    5. Overhaul electoral system. Make it so that nobody has to spend money (which is ultimately the bane of democratic process)
    6. Overhaul – Babu system – biggest non-sense of our democracy.

    Bharat Mata Ki Jai.

    • I partially agree with with you, but the fact remains is wheather, do we have any other alternative. We know congress for decades. But comparatively in just less than 5 years. BJP has done many good things and definitely deserve one more term to see wheather they will do better. I am not happy with petroleum prices and many things. Unfortunately, we do not have a better alternative at present.

  8. Article captures the thoughts of many. Nonetheless, inclusion of some numbers or analyses would help. For instance, perhaps you can consider including the analyses/thoughts of the three major outliers among the psephologists/analysts:
    * Dr. Praveen Patil ( @5Forty3 ),
    * Pradeep Bhandari ( @pradip103 ) of Jan Ki Baat ( @jankibaat1 ), and
    * Dr. Surjit Bhalla ( @surjitbhalla ) .
    Thanks.

  9. The public anger against Congress Party’s 10 year corrupt UPA rule at the Centre during 2004-2014 is so much, they will never repose their faith on the Congress Party again, so long as it is headed by highly corrupt and anti national Nehru Gandhi dynasty. The public anger against Congress party may come down if it is run by any other reputed person, other than Nehru-Ghande dynasty. So long as it is headed by Dat-Datt_Trey Kao Pappu Raul Vinci, the situation is ADVANTAGE BJP all the way. Even some people in BJP are corrupt, but Congress past corruptions and anti national activities tops it all and surpasses every other party’s corrupt deeds, because of their nearly 55 years solid experience in making corrupt deals.

  10. Sincerely hope and pray that BJP gets voted back to power in all the three States and also fares well in Telengana and the biased media is put to shame

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