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12.00 noon Oct 31, 2012

The CNN-IBN pre-poll survey in Gujarat

The CNN-IBN pre-poll survey in Gujarat conducted by CSDS shows the Narendra Modi's BJP garnering a 50 per cent vote share with the Congress far behind at 36. Talk to a seasoned analyst to get the whole picture.
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12 questions answered | 3 questions pending
  • Isn't Modi as an anti-Muslim, a media creation? Asked by: Iqbal Farooqi
  • Prof Suhas Palshikar If you mean that Modi is not anti-Muslims, I would perhaps beg to differ with you. By anti-Muslim, however, different shades are meant. In broad sense, Modi has done two things: he adheres to the view of Hindu nationalism wherein there is a tendency to suspect Muslims for many wrong doings and the idea of nationalism is based on being a Hindu. Secondly, Modi has consolidated an anti-Muslim sentiment among his followers. But as we all know, these assessments are always subject to differences of opinion. It is equally possible that there are followers of Modi who are more in favour of his image of Gujarat or of development and less supportive of his ideas on Muslim community.
  • Sir, As a Mango man, I dont see any reason to vote for Congress, the only reason I would vote of congress when there is no alternative like in Karnataka etc... otherwise with the likes of Nitish Kumar,Naveen Patnaik, Namo there congress is not an option at all. Are the mango people in Gujrat feeling the same? Asked by: Yash
  • Prof Suhas Palshikar Gujarat is for a long time a bi-polar state--meaning that the competition there is between two parties. When there are more than two parties, voters can weigh the choices more carefully. In a bi-party situation, it is an 'either-or' situation for the voter.
  • Pro incumbency factor,probably a first time usage of the jargon. This does give an indication of the maturity of electorate defying the belief that an incumbent is always at disadvantage ? Asked by: sundar1950in
  • Prof Suhas Palshikar Since 1999, the random anti-incumbency vote has come down. It is indeed a mark of the maturity of the voter. Voters do take into account performance, leadership and possibility of alternatives before deciding how to treat the incumbent party. Many times, they teach a lesson to the individual members rather than the party in general.
  • Wary of ant survey the politicians accept it when in their favour and reject it outright when against them. How is the congress likely to see the two recent results on such survey by the media ? Asked by: sundar1950in
  • Prof Suhas Palshikar It is really for the Congress party decide how to approach these polls. As a matter of fact, polling has advanced in our country and one can easily make out if a survey is dependable or not by examining its sampling strategy and representativeness of the sample. Many leaders have now actually started themselves depending on surveys and do not quarrel with the findings as perhaps they would have done ten years ago.
  • The main opposition in Gujarat The INC does not have much to credit in centre and is neither an effective position at the state. In the present scenario of anti graft activities is it likely that the poll figures in favour of the incumbent may even get surpassed ?? Asked by: sundar1950in
  • Prof Suhas Palshikar Your first statement about Congress is correct. But whether anti-graft sentiment will affect Gujarat voter is a big if--mainly because it is not an issue there.
  • A decade on from Godhra will the congress have anything better to offer to electorate other than their secular credentials ? Asked by: sundar1950in
  • Prof Suhas Palshikar The Congress in Gujarat has been organizationally in a weak situation for quite long time. Secondly, Modi has successfully made his ideas of development and Gujarati identity acceptable to large numbers of the electorate. On secularism, too, Congress has only very limited scope to present an alternative. On the other hand, if it does not send a message to the Muslims that it supports their concerns, then Congress would further lose even the Muslim votes. In all, a tough situation!
  • The poll survey showed BJP. should it not have been MGP - Modi's gujarat Party.? Asked by: sundar1950in
  • Prof Suhas Palshikar This is a very interesting observation. BJP of course denies that Gujarat BJP is only about Modi; but a larger-than-life image of a leader usually adversely affects the party.
  • BJP as a party is in bad shape with BSY problems at Karnataka,nitin gadkari's PURTI problems,Nitish's conditional support and TOOO many leaders aimimg for positions. Will this affect in anyway the PARTY's prospects at elections ?? Asked by: sundar1950in
  • Prof Suhas Palshikar Your assessment abut BJP's leadership problems is nearly accurate. But in Gujarat, only Modi is recognized as a leader of the party and so, in Gujarat the leadership issue is not likely to affect the party.
  • Do you suspect any errors on the sample size or methodology of survey which could make the results away from actual positions ?? Asked by: sundar1950in
  • Prof Suhas Palshikar There is always a possibility of a margin of error in the range of three percent. In this instance, such an error is not likely to affect the current results --but remember that these are trends captured much before actual date of voting.
  • Keshubhai's attempt at Patel consolidation will get assistance from congress ? Any alliance is in offing with the congress ? Asked by: sundar1950in
  • Prof Suhas Palshikar Congress in Gujarat historically has very weak base among Patels. So, it cannot really help Keshubhai in this task. So far, there does not seem to be much conversation between congress and Keshubhai. Unless the Congress is getting larger numbers and Keshubhai too is likely to make a dent, such conversation is not going to take place.
  • Sir, have we found out, what Modi's performance would have been if there had been a stronger opposition. Asked by: Narayan
  • Prof Suhas Palshikar There is no easy measurement of this dimension. A strong opposition can stall work; it can also spur the incumbent to do the better job of it!
  • if narendra modi likely to go new delhi politics then has he nursed any leader next to him to take over from him? if yes, who ? if no, why? Asked by: pankaj desai
  • Prof Suhas Palshikar I am afraid Modi has not made any such arrangements about his successor in Gujarat. Partly because, it is not certain that he would move to Delhi in near future, partly also because leaders tend have a sense of insecurity if there is a line of succession!

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Prof Suhas Palshikar
Director, Lokniti Research Programme, CSDS