Wednesday, February 26, 2014

What Pollsters Say about 2014 General Election?

What Pollsters Say about 2014 General Election?
Syed Ali Mujtaba

The General election 2014 is just round the corner.  Everyone in the country is waiting for the Election Commission to announce the polling days. The election will be held over multiple phases starting on 16 April and running until 13 May and the 16th Lok Sabha has to be constituted before June 1.

Ahead of the polls, some pollsters have come up with opinion poll, each giving a clear lead to the Bhartiya Janata Party and making its leader Narender Modi as the most favored candidate for the post of Prime Minster.

There are as many as FIVE pollsters who have done opinion poll and have come out with their results.  First is CVoter and the India Today media group, second ABP news (Nielsen), third Times NOW-C Voter national poll projection, fourth is CVoter and the India Today media group and fifth is CVoter and the India Today media group.

While the first four have given the national poll verdict, it’s the fifth that has come up with the state wise breakup to provide an elaborate picture of the General election 2014.

CVoter and the India Today media group survey suggests that the BJP is set to win 188 seats in the 543-seat Parliament. The opinion poll gives the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) only around 100 seats. The survey suggests that UPA’s seat share will be 109 in 2014. The NDA’s tally would be 212 seats in 2014. Others would get 222 seats in 2014.

CVoter and the India Today media group survey also underlines the significance of a possible Third Front in the forthcoming Lok Sabha election as the non-UPA, non-NDA parties and Independents are expected to win 220-odd seats.  The survey forecast that AAP may win 10 -11 seats in the national polls.
CVoter and the India Today media group surveyed almost 21,800 respondents across 28 states, with a three per cent margin of error at the national level.

The ABP news-Nielsen national opinion poll suggests that BJP will grab somewhere around 210 out of the 543 parliamentary seats. On the other hand, the Congress-led UPA would end up with mere 101 seats. On the whole, the BJP led National Democratic Alliance will get 226 seats.  Left parties would get 30 while 186 seats would go to others.

Times NOW-C Voter national poll says that the National Democratic Alliance would bag 227, seats and would emerge a single largest alliance formation but will be short of 55 seats from getting a simple majority that is 272 seats.

The CSDS and the CNN-IBN news channel survey gives the sate wise break up to suggest that the BJP has an advantage in the north and western India, while its position remains weak in south and eastern India.  
The survey predicts BJP to get 41-49 out of the 80 seats in Uttar Pradesh. Bahujan Samaj Party to get 10-16 seats.  Samajwadi Party to bag 8-14 seats, Congress will be the last to get only 4-10 seats.

In Bihar the scene is similar with the BJP as frontrunner winning 16-24 out of 40 seats. The Janata Dal (United) 7-13, Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) 6-10 seats, Congress to get 0-4 seats.

In West Bengal it is the Trinamool Congress at the top and is projected to win 20-28 seats out of 40 MPs.  The Left Front may get 7-13 seats and the Congress is expected to bag 5-9.  In West Bengal BJP position is very weak and is projected to win only 0-2 seats.

In Orissa the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) is likely to bag 10-16 seats. Here Congress may manage 3-9 and BJP 0-4 seats.

It’s Maharashtra where BJP -Shiv Sena combine is likely to do very well and expected to win 24 of the 48 seats.  The Congress-Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) combine is expected to bag nearly 12-20 seats.
In Gujarat the BJP is predicted to win 20-25 seats out of the total 26 seats. Congress is expected to manage only 1-4 seats, while others may bag anything between 0-2.

Madhya Pradesh is another state where BJP, is projected to do well. Out of the total 29 seats, the BJP is predicted to wrest 23-27, while the Congress may get 2-5.

In South India, picture is totally different where regional parties and Congress has strong presence. In
Karnataka, Congress is expected to do well and may win 10-18 seats. Here the BJP may get 6-10 seats and JD(S) 4-8 seats.

In Andhra Pradesh YSR Congress is projected to win 11-19 seats, out of the 42 seats. Congress may bag only 5-6 and the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) 9-15. Telangana Rasthra Samithi (TRS) is expected to get 4-8 seats.

The poll survey projects the ruling AIADMJK to win 15-23 in Tamil Nadu. Here the opposition DMK may get 7-13 and the Congress 1-5.
In Kerala the United Democratic Front (UDF) is projected to win 12-18 seats. Left Democratic Front (LDF) may get 2-8 seats.

In Delhi the survey said the Aam Aadmi Party could win 4-6 seats. The BJP is predicted to win 1-3 seats. Congress may not get a single seat in Delhi.

The CSDS poll surveyed just fewer than 18,600 voters in 18 states, with a margin of error that varies from state to state.

The BJP’s Prime Minister Candidate Narendra Modi is topping the popularity chart with almost all the pollsters giving thumbs up to him. One survey suggests that 30 percent of the electorate want Modi for the top post.

The CSDS and CNN-IBN news channel survey suggests that Modi has emerged as the most popular candidate. This pollster goes on to say that the 2014 General Election will be a referendum on Narendra Modi.

The last word on the pollster’s predication is the reaction from Congress leader Manish Tewari. He says; “after demolishing all surveys and analyses, when results of 2014 Lok Sabha elections come, you'll find that with God's grace and support of people those who have given Prime Ministers to the country are back in power and those who have given Prime Ministerial candidates are again back in their permanent place, the Opposition."

Syed Ali Mujtaba is a journalist based in Chennai. He can be contacted at

Friday, February 14, 2014

The Republic of Bihar in 2014

The Republic of Bihar in 2014

Hi every one, I am back from my native place in Bihar, my annual trip since the age of 12, when I was sent to Delhi for school. Since then I continue to visit my place once in winter and other in summer and witness to the changes that is taking place very slowly there.

The mud houses in the villages have become brick houses, the bullock cart or horse cart has give way to motor cart, ‘Jharjariya’ in the rural landscape. The numbers of mobike riders have increased, the cycle people are far few in numbers. One thing that struck me is the education of the children, which is going on a big way. Most of the children in rural areas are now going to school, especially the girls.

Syed Murtaza High School that my father donated to the government after running it for some time has lot many children then when I was around. I still remember sitting in the class there and making yarn from the charkha, a legacy left behind by Mahtma Gandhi and the freedom struggle. I still remember my father hoisting national tri color on the independence and republic day.

The other noticeable change is the laying of roads that has increased the connectivity from one place to another. Mobile phones too have added to this change. If this is called change then Bihar is changing but when we compare it with other developed state Bihar is far behind in developmental terms.

Even though economists taut Bihar as the fastest growing state, I see there is little change on the surface The damage done by the Lalu regime to the system of governance is still in the repair stage. Nothing new is coming up on the ground that can showcase change. The exodus of the people especially unskilled workers and students to other states continues even today. The usual contractor mafia is ruling the state. What has changed is role of politicians has minimized but the government officials have become more powerful.

As usual two things casts its magic for getting work done in Bihar; one money to bribe the officials and whose rates has phenomenally increased, other use of contacts to influence the authorities to get work done. Everyone asked me who I am and what I do. I could read the faces, when I told I work for private organization in Chennai. They wished I was Manmohan Singh or Nitish Kumar, so that they can use my influence to get work done. Well if wishes were horses……

To sum up there is all round dissatisfaction among people in Bihar. Most of them like to leave Bihar to escape the hardships; those who cannot have to suffer. There is no other go. The developmental nightmares are glaring at its face.

Power crisis is the most acute one. Creation of jobs is another. Sanitation, hygiene, disease all needs attention. Monsoon vagaries have devastated the agriculture in Bihar. What appears that there is no redemption to the people from their compounded woes.

However, there is a category of people who are enjoying life in such chaos. It’s those whose approach towards life is to take it easy. They work less talk more. One deputy collector I talked to was lampooning the computer system and was saying I conducted the entire election through pen and paper and carbon copy.

There is no significant change noticed on the attitude of those who do not like to work but want to get money for free. This is the biggest drag on Bihar. If this attitude changes only then there will be a real turnaround of the Republic of Bihar.