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Posted at: May 20, 2019, 8:28 PM; last updated: May 20, 2019, 9:12 PM (IST)

From doubt to complete faith, opinion divided on exit polls

From doubt to complete faith, opinion divided on exit polls
People look at a television screen showing exit poll results after the last phase of the Lok Sabha election in Ahmedabad on May 19, 2019. Reuters

Tribune Web Desk
Chandigarh, May 20

From doubting exit polls to showing complete faith in them, everyone — be it a voter or a politician — has an opinion about the first predictions on the Lok Sabha elections.

Exit polls on Sunday forecast another term for Prime Minister Narendra Modi with some of them projecting that the BJP-led NDA would get over 300 seats to comfortably cross the majority mark of 272 in the Lok Sabha.

Believing that exit polls are a pointer to the final results, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said the Opposition's fake issue of EVMs should also lose its non-existent rationale.

Congress leader and party spokesperson Sanjay Jha has a rather hillarious take on these projections. “If exit polls figures are true then my dog is a nuclear scientist,” he said on Twitter.

Expressing faith in exit polls, author Chetan Bhagat said if Lok Sabha results are in Modi's favour as exit poll are saying, “opposition leaders should spend the next 5 years improving themselves rather than hating Modi”.

Veteran politician Sharad Yadav has outrightly rejected exit polls. “Exit polls of Lok Sabha election are fraud not the truth.  Ground reality was totally different & against d NDA. Which people have done this survey & consists of which castes? I would pray let d democracy survives & as such defeat of NDA is necessary,” he tweeted.

With TV channels flashing exit poll numbers since last evening, author Krishan Partap Singh has apparently found an idea for his next novel.

“Ruling party captures Election Commission,thereby gaining access to EVMs,& then fixes exit polls to inflate numbers & thus provide cover for stolen seats via captured EVMs. Purely fictional scenario. Any resemblance to actual events is purely coincidental!,” he said on Twitter.

Lawyer and activist Prashant Bhushan said exit polls were "flawed". He pointed out that a TV news channel showed BJP winning in Chandigarh though Congress had highest vote share. “...showed AAP getting votes in Uttarakhand tho they are not contesting!”

Doubting the intention behind airing exit polls, he said all this was done to push up BJP and stock market.

Congress leader and MP Shashi Tharoor pointed to Australia’s elections last weekend, where 56 different exit polls were proved wrong. “In India, many people don’t tell pollsters the truth fearing they might be from the government. Will wait till 23rd for the real results,” he tweeted.

Swaraj India president Yogendra Yadav has drawn flak for his “Congress must die” comment after the exit polls.

“The Congress must die. If it could not stop the BJP in this election to save the idea of India, this party has no positive role in Indian history. Today it represents the single biggest obstacle to creation of an alternative,” he said.

Actor Anupam Kher tweeted a video of his mother saying, “Much before exit polls, Mom had given her verdict. Didn’t post it. Was waiting for the voting to get over completely. But now you can watch why she thinks Narendra Modi should win.”

His wife Kirron Kher is BJP candidate from Chandigarh.

Stating the exit polls have been proven wrong in the past, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot said, “It is not necessary that they are always right, instead, most of the time they have not been accurate.”

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