Exit polls catch the trend, but not the numbers
To be fair most exit/opinion polls had predicted that the UPA would be the largest group in the next Parliament, and the Congress would bag the most seats. To that extent, they were spot on, reports Gargi Gupta.india Updated: May 17, 2009 03:18 IST
To be fair most exit/opinion polls had predicted that the UPA would be the largest group in the next Parliament, and the Congress would bag the most seats. To that extent, they were spot on — unlike in 2004, when they got all the numbers wildly wrong. But what the pollsters clearly couldn’t anticipate was the extent of the win for the UPA/Congress in Election 2009.
The game changers really were the two states of Rajasthan and Andhra Pradesh, where no one had expected the Congress to do well at all. Kerala, expectedly, saw a big swing in favour of the Congress, while in Tamil Nadu and West Bengal, its alliance partners did unexpectedly well.
And then there were the 21 seats that the Congress won in Uttar Pradesh — the cherry on the cake.
Incidentally, it was the UPA’s good showing in both TN and AP that had propelled it to power in 2004.
This time, everyone had expected the anti-incumbency factor to scupper the Congress’s chances — only it didn’t happen that way and the party more than held its ground in both states.
Just goes to show that election predictions is a most inexact science. Or perhaps, it is as Sonia Gandhi says, that the Indian voter finally knows what is good for him.