Reactions are pouring in from all contesting parties since the exit poll results of Gujarat elections were released on Thursday. The exit polls predict BJP will secure a comfortable majority. One survey even said that the saffron party can win upto 135 out of 182 seats of the Gujarat legislative assembly. However, BJP leaders are confident of achieving the target of 151 seats set by PM Narendra Modi and party chief Amit Shah. BJP leader Giriraj Singh on Friday told a TV channel that the saffron party will easily win 150 plus seat when the final counting is done on December 18. The BJP is also expected to sweep Himachal Pradesh Assembly elections with a record majority.
After a rancorous campaign, which saw sharp exchanges between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Congress’s president-elect Rahul Gandhi, almost all exit polls predicted over 100 seats for BJP in Gujarat, where the party has ruled for over two decades. Today’s Chanakya predicted 135 seats for BJP in Gujarat and just 47 for the Congress, 14 less than the opposition party has in the current Assembly. It also predicted a voteshare of 49 per cent for the BJP and 38 per cent for challenger Congress. In 2012, BJP had won 115 seats, Congress 61 and others six. Similarly, Times Now-VMR Exit poll predicted 113 seats for BJP and 66 for the Congress. The Republic-C Voter Exit Poll gave the BJP 108 seats and the Congress 74, while the ABP-CSDS exit survey said BJP may win in 117 seats and Congress 64.
NDTV predicted the BJP is likely to win 112 seats and the Congress 70. The News X Exit polls gave 110-120 seats to BJP and 65 to 75 seats to the Congress, while the News Nation exit polls gave the BJP as many as 124-128 seats and the Congress between 52 to 56 seats and 1-3 for others.
Reaction on the exit polls results, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said the BJP was always confident of its victory and the exit polls have predicted the same. “We have been confident from the beginning that we will be able to work with the voters in Gujarat, we will be able to communicate with them. Our good work in the last several governments that we have had, has been repeatedly called by
the voters themselves. We have more work to do towards development which is ‘sab ka sath, sab ka vikas’,” she was quoted as saying by PTI.
She further said that Gujarat valued the importance of peace and harmony, and of good governance. “I think our plank that only development can bring in equality-based development has been acceptable for the people. And that’s what exit polls show. We will wait for the 18th, we are confident we will make it,” she said.
Congress, however, said exit polls may get wrong on the counting day/ Congress spokesperson Shobha Oza, “I don’t know how much you trust the exit polls. We have seen exit polls in Bihar, Tamil Nadu, Punjab. All of them proved to be wrong. So, how much can one trust the exit polls. We will wait for the 18th for the real results. Let’s not take these exit polls too seriously. We have seen them go wrong in many states in the past,” Oza said, adding “definitely, we are winning in Gujarat.”