Lucknow: Who will win UP election 2017? While no one can predict it rightly, many people, private agencies and even government’s intelligence agencies have been trying to predict the outcome of the UP election 2017.
Poll prediction is the toughest thing and we have seen it on many occasions in the past. While the most recent one is the case of the US presidential elections 2016, when all the poll pundits were claiming a massive win for Hillary Clinton, the former Secretary of State and a former First Lady.
But real estate baron, Donald Trump, defied all the poll predictions and romped home with substantial majority. It is said that white, graduate women, who were rooting for Hillary Clinton till before the poll day, changed their preference and voted for a former reality star.
Earlier, Bihar had shamed many poll pundits, including NDTV’s Pronnoy Roy, who had predicted a clean sweep for the BJP. Lalu Yadav and Nitish kumar’s Maha Gathbandhan swept the election leaving the BJP with merely close to 60 seats.
While five states went for the polls, the state, on which all eyes are fixated right now is Uttar Pradesh, with 200 million population. There is trepidation of sorts everywhere. This year there was no leher or wave in favor of any political party, unlike the Modi wave that shattered every record in Lok Sabha election 2014. This is the reason that Prime Minister Modi was deployed so extensively that UP minister Azam Khan went on to quip that it gave an impression he was a nukkad neta (very local leader).
While, like Bihar elections, most experts have said that it is the Bharatiya Janata Party which has a significant advantage, BSP may emerge as the single largest party in the state.
A report by Sanjay Singh of First Post says, “An excessive reliance of the SP-Congress coalition to woo Muslims has given rise to latent Hindutva sentiments across the state. The strategists perhaps erred in calculating the Muslims vote but they are not the only ones who vote. Mayawati too has erred on the same count. Scratch a bit and Hindutva sentiments of non-Yadav and non-Jatav community would come out to the fore. The situation may not be that of 2014 but this factor is certainly there on the ground and that could significantly tilt the balance for BJP”.
Pranav Gupta and Rahul Verma of Lokniti-CSDS, in an article in Indian Express said the BJP may win in UP because the party learnt from its mistakes in Bihar and the SP-Congress’ “level of popularity may not have lead to conversion of votes in favour of SP-Congress alliance, at least not at the scale achieved by the Mahagathbandhan.”
Then there are people who sound completely oblivious of niceties of media. “If a wind is blowing from Maharashra and Gujarat through Punjab and Haryana into Odisha, can UP be immune? No, politics in UP today is not local. There is little support for any local BJP leader. The chant you hear everywhere is ‘Modi, Modi, Modi”, Swaminathan Aiyar wrote in the Times of India.