Cautious BJP refrains from celebrations

Ranjan Basu, New Delhi
Published : 00:01, May 20, 2019 | Updated : 00:01, May 20, 2019

India`s Prime Minister Narendra Modi gestures as he is presented with a garland during an election campaign rally in Patan, Gujarat, India, April 21, 2019. REUTERSExit polls for the mammoth general election in India shows Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP)-led alliance National Democratic Alliance is likely to cinch a large win for the second term.
BJP, however, has refrained from celebrations given that exit polls had proved to be off the mark in their predictions from time to time.
Almost all the exit polls on Sunday (May 19), including TimesNowVMR, Republic-CVoter, India Today and News Nation showed a clear majority for NDA with nearly 300, out of total 542 Lok Sabha (lower house) seats.
The polls have also predicted NDA to sweep a win in several key states, including Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Maharashtra, and Madhya Pradesh.
All India seat projection
Speaking to Bangla Tribune, BJP National General Secretary Ram Lal said that the party never has and never will start celebrations based on the exit polls.
“We are obviously happy. We had no doubt that people would put their trust on BJP for the second time,” he added and said they will wait for the final results on May 23.
The opposition Congress, meanwhile, is understandably unhappy with the results of exit polls.
“I have absolutely do not wish to comment on these meaningless polls,” Congress spokesperson Pawan Khera said when Bangla Tribune reached him on the phone.
“We have always said that the Modi-Amit Shaha duo is controlling the media by threatening them in many ways. It’s not at all difficult to gauge what the polls sponsored by those channels will say,” he said.
He, too, like the BJP’s Ram Lal, said that they would wait till the final outcome on May 23.
“Everyone will see then if Modi wins the majority,” Khera said.
Several other Congress leaders echoed.
“Just take the case of Karnatak. Most of the exit polls have given BJP 21 to 25 seats out of the 28. But the Congress and Janata Dal (S) have taken part in the election as a coalition, it’s impossible [to be the predictions accurate],” a Congress leader said while speaking to Bangla Tribune at the party’s Akbar Road headquarters in Delhi.
West Bengal seats projection
Apart from Congress and BJP, the third bloc ‘Federal Front’ has also sharply reacted to the exit polls.
Trinamool leader and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamta Banerjee completely shot down the exit polls results.
"I don’t trust exit poll gossip," she said on Twitter. "I appeal to all opposition parties to be united, strong and bold. We will fight this battle together."
Chief Minister of the eastern state of West Bengal, Mamata Banerjee, attends the `Save Democracy` rally to protest against India’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government in New Delhi, India, February 13, 2019. REUTERSNational Conference leader and former Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir Omar Abdulla’s mockery-tinged tweet read: “Every single exit poll can’t be wrong! Time to switch off the TV, log out of social media & wait to see if the world is still spinning on its axis on the 23rd.”
Voting began on Apr 11 and ended on Sunday (May 19) in the world's biggest democratic exercise.
Although Modi's party is poised to lose seats in northern Uttar Pradesh, which elects the most lawmakers out of all Indian states, the party's return to power will be on the back of a strong showing in other northern heartland regions and two eastern provinces, CVoter's polling showed.

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