‘It’s advantage NDA in Northeast’

Exit polls predict an average 15 seats out of 25 across eight States

Published - May 20, 2019 01:11 am IST - GUWAHATI

The exit polls for the 2019 Lok Sabha election have made the BJP-led NDA the frontrunner in the Northeast comprising 25 parliamentary seats across eight States.

The agencies that conducted the polls have predicted an average 15 seats for the NDA with an upper limit of 17, while the prime challenger, the Congress, has been given a maximum of seven seats. The predictions indicate that the BJP would fare better than its eight seats — seven from Assam and one from Arunachal Pradesh — in 2014.

The agencies have been consistent with Assam, ruled by a BJP-led alliance. They have given the NDA a maximum of eight out of a total of 14 seats. The BJP had contested 10 seats, leaving three to the Asom Gana Parishad and one to the Bodoland People’s Front.

For instance, Republic-C voter has predicted 17 seats for the NDA and seven for the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance in the Northeast. It has forecast eight seats for BJP, five for Congress and one for others in Assam.

The Republic-Jan Ki Baat has predicted 14-15 seats for the NDA and 10-11 seats for the UPA in the Northeast. The BJP is predicted to win 10-11 of these and the Congress seven.

The News18-IPSOS survey for Assam is 8-10 for NDA, 2-4 for Congress and two for the All India United Democratic Front. Chanankya, on the other hand, has predicted 10 seats for BJP and allies, three for Congress and one for others. “The exit polls show the people have voted for nationalism, for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision, for development and against appeasement. If you transfer the Lok Sabha result to the Assembly segment, you will see that the BJP and its allies have done better than in the 2016 Assembly polls,” said Himanta Biswa Sarma, Assam’s Health Minister and BJP’s chief strategist in the Northeast.

‘Wait for results’

“We have seen such predictions going awfully wrong in the past. It is advisable to wait for the actual results on May 23,” former Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi said.

Former Congress MP Kirip Chaliha, however, said exit polls cannot be “all gossip” as “certain amount of science is behind it” and the credibility of the survey agencies is at stake. “The readings reveal there is a 30% gap between the winner and loser. So if you allow a correction of 10%, the exit polls seem to be more or less on target. Still, this is just prediction, not the actual thing,” he said.

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