Kanpur/Asansol/Chennai: Cutting across party lines, most politicians appear to be anxious about the results they will achieve from the 2014 general elections.
The 69-day long nine-phased poll began on April 7 and ended on May 12. Results will be announced by Friday (May 16) afternoon.
In Kanpur, a niece of senior BJP leader Murli Manohar Joshi, Guddi, said: “All workers of the Bharatiya Janata Party have worked very hard and we are waiting for the 16th May. That day will be a day of celebration for us. I am confident that Murli Manohar Joshi will win this Kanpur parliamentary seat.”
Singer-turned-politician Babul Supriyo, who is the BJP candidate from the Asansol parliamentary constituency in West Bengal, said: “I felt excellent in meeting my actual audience, actual people. As a singer, I am on stage, I meet and interact with people, but that’s limited.But here, when you are on the streets walking through neighbourhood, these are the actual people who ask for autographs.”
Congress leader B. S. Gnanadesikan said in Chennai: “Normally in 2004 and 2009 both pre-poll and exit polls were proved wrong. In fact they under estimated the Congress seats, but with the results they saw the reverse happening. The Congress crossed more than 200 seats and BJP failed to cross 200 seats and we formed the government.”
Exit polls have shown that the BJP and its allies would touch the half-way mark in the 543-member Lower House of the parliament. Congress party, in power for the past decade, faces its worst ever defeat.
Polls have consistently shown voters favouring Modi, a divisive but charismatic figure, to lead the country – gaining a march over his main opponent Rahul Gandhi, the political heir of the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty appointed to lead the Congress campaign.
Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has benefited from a wave of public anger over corruption scandals and a slowing economy under the ruling Congress, which may be facing one of it’s weakest-ever showings at the polls.
Campaigning mainly on promises to create jobs and restore India to a path of high economic growth, Modi – whose critics accuse him of harbouring Hindu supremacist views – has largely steered clear of religion.
Modi’s oratory skills and high-tech campaign have made him a solid favourite in opinion polls to unseat the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty from New Delhi.
Indian elections are notoriously hard to predict, however, due to the country’s diverse electorate and a parliamentary system in which local candidates hold great sway and translating vote share into actual seats won is not always reliable.