Another day, another political controversy. Even as citizens of West Bengal vote in the fourth phase of the Assembly Elections, poll analyst Prashant Kishor is all Twitter can talk about. A leaked audio clip, where the poll strategist can be heard candidly discussing the Trinamool Congress' chances of retaining power in the eastern state has now become fodder for the BJP and its allies and supporters.
In the now viral audio excerpts, Kishor can be heard stating that Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee were "equally popular" in West Bengal and that surveys conducted by his team had given outcomes in favour of the BJP.
"Suvendu is not a factor. Hindus, schedule caste, Dalit and Hindi speaking population are the key factors. Around 50-55 per cent of Hindus are voting for BJP. There are around one crore Hindi speaking population in West Bengal. Matuas will predominantly vote for the BJP. When we made a survey and asked people whose government will be formed in Bengal. The outcomes predominantly come in favour of the BJP. In-ground there are workers of BJP," he can be heard saying. He further said the parties like Congress, Left and TMC has been practising appeasement politics in West Bengal.
But even as "Prashant Kishor" and the hashtag "Bright Wing" trends online, the former JD(U) politician is standing firm. Reiterating his earlier claims that the party would struggle to cross double digits in the state, Kishor contends that his remarks are being taken somewhat selectively and out of context. Taking to Twitter on Saturday, he assured yet again that the BJP would not cross 100 seats in the state polls.
"I am glad BJP is taking my chat more seriously than the words of their own leaders! They should show courage and share the full chat instead of getting excited with the selective use of parts of it. I have said this before and repeating again - BJP will not CROSS 100 in West Bengal," he wrote.
Since then, critics and Opposition leaders have lost no time in hitting out at the TMC's poll strategist.