Opinion poll predicts a simple majority for BJP in UP Assembly polls

Our Special Correspondent

NEW DELHI, January 31: India’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) will romp home to power in Uttar Pradesh with a simple majority after a 15-year gap, according to an opinion poll by Times Now-VMR.

According to the survey, the BJP will win 202 seats in the 403-member assembly with a vote share of 34 per cent. In 2012, the BJP had managed 155 seats.

The Samajwadi Party-Congress Party alliance, launched with much hope and fanfare, will manage only 147 seats, down 105 seats from the last assembly elections. The alliance will poll 31 per cent of the vote share.

A possible reason for such a poor showing despite the bonhomie between UP Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav and Congress Party Vice-President Rahul Gandhi can be SP’s founder and Akhilesh’s father Mulayam Singh Yadav open opposition to the alliance.

Mayawati’s Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), which has fielded Muslims in a big way, will have to contend with only 47 seats with a vote share of 24%. This is 33 less than what she had managed in 2012.

The others, including Ajit Singh’s Rashtriya Lok Dal, will get 11 per cent of vote share and seven seats.

The survey also concluded that SP’s Akhilesh Yadav is the most popular chief minister face in the state with the backing of 39 per cent of the electorate.

Mayawati with 23 per cent support is second in this race, followed by BJP’s Yogi Adityanath who has 16 per cent of backing.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s demonetisation move has got a big thumbs up in the state, with 63.4 per cent of people saying that the move is good for India.

But 31.9 per cent feel the move to demonetise high currency notes is not a good move.

Meanwhile, releasing the BJP’s election manifesto for the UP state assembly polls here on January 28, its President Amit Shah claimed his party will win a two-thirds majority and form the next government in India’s largest state.

"BJP is going to form the government with a two-thirds majority," Shah said, "We have taken the feedback of about 30 lakh people through missed calls, letters, etc. We have done 5,000 public meetings," he had said.

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