Lotus seems to be blooming again in India according to all the exit polls released on Sunday, May 19, 2019. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) was placed in a commanding position to form the next government and the number of Lok Sabha seats it is projected to bag varies from 267-365.The NDA is also seen making gains in Bihar, West Bengal, Odisha and Maharashtra.
According to Times Now-VMR 2019, NDA would bag 306 seats and Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) is set to bag 132 seats. Two exit polls telecast by Republic-C Voter gave NDA 295 seats and 287 seats, while they projected 122 and 128 seats for UPA.
According to IANS – C Voter, the NDA is poised to bag 287 seats while the BJP is expected to win 236 on it’s own and Congress is set to win just 80 seats. The NDTV survey projected that the NDA would bag about 300 seats while UPA would win only 127 seats.
The News24-Chanakya and India Today-Axis My India predicted clean sweep for the BJP. The NDA is predicted to bag 350 seats according to News24-Chanakya and 338-365 seats as per India Today’s survey, while UPA would not even cross the three figure mark.
However, ABP-Nielsen and Neta NewsX did not give clear majority to the NDA but predicted 127 and 164 seats respectively for UPA. NDA would bag 267 and 242 seats respectively according to them.
While saffron party and it’s allies are celebrating the exit poll results and preparing for the D-day, opposition leaders have refused to believe the results of the exit polls and are waiting for the final results. Mamata Banerjee, Rahul Gandhi and many other opposition leaders have said that they don’t believe in exit poll results as it is a game to manipulate Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) through gossip.
Venkaiah Naidu and HD Kumaraswamy have also given a statement that ‘Exit Polls do not mean exact polls’ and to some extent these statements are true that the exit polls are not accurate and cannot be relied upon.
The Exit polls of 2004 and 2009 failed to accurately predict the results of the same year elections and had to face criticism for their inaccuracy. In 2004, exit polls were in favour of NDA government but UPA staged a stunning comeback. Similarly, in 2009, Exit polls predicted a hung parliament but Congress alone managed to win 200 seats.
Exit Polls of 2014 Lok Sabha Election predicted BJP’s victory but failed to predict the magnitude of victory. In 2014 the CNS-IBN-CSDS-Lokniti survey projected that NDA would bag 276 seats while UPA will manage to win just 97 seats. According to Times Now survey, NDA was predicted to bag 249 seats and 148 seats would be won by UPA. ABP-Nielsen and NDTV-Hansa Research gave NDA government 274 seats and 279 seats respectively while UPA was limited to 97 and 103 seats respectively.
News24-Chanakya proved to be the most accurate one in 2014 as it predicted 340 seats for NDA and 70 seats for UPA. In the general election 2014, NDA won 336 seats and UPA managed to win just 66 seats which was it’s all time low. Hence, though the exit poll results are out, we must wait for Thursday when the final result will be revealed.