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Reading through exit polls

Reading through exit polls
Highlights

If May 19 ratifies exit polls, it certainly means interesting political trends.  The anti-incumbency is defining the mandate in Kerala, Assam and Tamil Nadu.

If May 19 ratifies exit polls, it certainly means interesting political trends. The anti-incumbency is defining the mandate in Kerala, Assam and Tamil Nadu.

Most of the exit polls predict a big sweep for Mamata Banerjee. The unusual alliance between the CPI (M) led left Front and Congress has paid off but not to the extent these parties hoped.

In fact there was fairly good amount of synergy between the two. But political arithmetic did not seem to have translated into political chemistry which more or less is limited to political workers than actual voters.

The Left has to introspect why it could not dislodge Mamata though her government is mired in a series of scams and absolute misgovernance. But, the only hope for the Left is that the prevailing fear psychosis in the State might disprove exit polls as voters do not venture to reveal their mind to pollsters.

However, if exit polls come true, the CPI (M) would certainly head for a serious ideological introspection as the alliance is cobbled up on arithmetic rather than ideology.

The Left seems to be romping home a mixed mandate. Its victory in Kerala would at least compensate for its failure to regain West Bengal. But, the total story is that the Left could stem its decline to a large extent. This was possible by accepting the grassroots political reality in West Bengal and not imprisoned by ideological dogma.

The CPI (M) could ensure that factionism which is a way of life for the party in Kerala does not prevail during the polls and the voters seem to have rewarded it for that. The exit polls predict further erosion of Congress.

The party fails to present a political narrative to attract voters. But the body blow the party suffers is primarily the result of anti-incumbency it faces in Assam and Kerala.

The BJP has not much to hope for in this round of elections. But, it seems to have only gained whatever little it could. More satisfying thing for the saffron party is the humiliation Congress likely to suffer at the hustings.

The BJP tied up with BDJS in a bid to emerge as a third force in a polarised Kerala polity divided between two fronts. But, the Lotus is still a long way to blossom in god’s own state. The BJP’s new-found alliance seems to have only marginal impact on the Kerala mandate. But, barring Assam, the BJP has little or no stakes in this poll.

The exit polls are not unanimous in regard to Tamil Nadu. The State seems to be swinging between two alliances. If anti-incumbency has its way in Tamil Nadu as most of the polls predict, Congress has at least something to cheer about.

But the significant outcome perhaps is that the polls are likely to yield clear verdicts. Despite fragmented polity, the voters seem to have not given any split verdict.

But the results of exit polls are certainly not the real results. Everyone needs to keep one's fingers crossed till the EVMs reveal the mood of the voter on May 19.

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