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May 22, 2013 at 11:20am IST

Manmohan should be replaced as PM, UPA has lost credibility: Poll

New Delhi: As Congress-led United Progressive Alliance completes four years in office on May 22, what is the mood in urban India? In a 12-city poll conducted by CNN-IBN in age group of 18 years or more, the verdict is emphatic and overwhelmingly against the current regime. The poll reveals that UPA government has lost credibility and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh no longer enjoys confidence of urban India.

An overwhelming 61 per cent of those polled said Prime Minister Manmohan Singh should be replaced as prime minister while only 37 per cent said they were in favour of him continuing in the post. A meagre two per cent could not decide.

When asked out the UPA rule, 67 per cent said that the government has lost its credibility while only 31 per cent felt the UPA is still better than other options available.

But a majority of those polled stand by Manmohan Singh's integrity with 40 per cent people believing that the Prime Minister is an honest man, 33 per cent believe he wasn't while 24 per cent said his perception of honesty has come down in the past one year.

The Achilles' heel of the UPA is massive corruption and here the UPA government is on a very shaky ground. Asked to rate the Manmohan Singh government on the corruption index, 71 per cent felt that corruption has increased in the last four years, 20 per cent say that corruption levels are the same as before while only eight per cent say that corruption levels have come down.

Even Manmohan Singh is not spared with 64 per cent of the respondents saying that the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) was trying to cover-up scams like coalgate or 2G spectrum allocation scam and 65 per cent blaming Singh himself for coal blocks allocation.

Only 28 per cent say that Singh cannot be blamed for the massive corruption in coal blocks allocation while seven per cent have no opinion.

But it's not corruption which is the biggest worry for urban India. Instead rising prices are its prime concern followed by corruption and safety..

For 53 per cent of the respondents spiralling price rise is the biggest worry while 26 per cent say rampant corruption and eight per cent point to lack of safety and security as the major concern.

The poll shows that a majority of the respondents said that the UPA did not deserve a second chance. An overwhelming majority of 56 per cent are against UPA getting another chance while 40 per cent want the same political group to come back to power. Only four per cent of the respondents have no opinion.

The bad news for UPA may mean good news for Gujarat Chief Minister and BJP leader Narendra Modi as 38 per cent want him to be the next prime minister of I ndia while Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi is a distant second with only 14 per cent votes in his favour. Manmohan Singh is third (13 per cent) followed by Congress President Sonia Gandhi (six per cent) and senior BJP leader LK Advani (five per cent).

So what goes in Modi's favour? Forty-one per cent say that Modi's ability to take strong decisions is his biggest strong point while 40 per cent are enamoured by his business friendly approach while 34 per cent are impressed with his governance record.. Only 19 per cent say that he is not fair to all sections of the society.

In contrast Rahul Gandhi was held to be immature and inexperienced by 32 per cent of those polled, 29 per cent pointed out that he had no past record of governance while 28 per cent said that he is business friendly and will bring development. Rahul Gandhi is seen as an honest and a man of personal integrity by 26 per cent respondents while 23 per cent voted for him saying he represents youth and understands the aspirations of a young nation.

The Third Front too might have reasons to worry as the poll shows that 44 per cent respondents have given thumbs down any of the Third Front leaders. Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and Tamil Nadu's J Jayalalithaa are all within striking distance of each other.

While 17 per cent of the respondents back Nitish Kumar, Mamata has the support of 16 per cent followed by Jayalalithaa at 12 per cent.

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