Exit polls in past failed to read public mood, shows analysis

With just two days left for the mega electoral battle to elect the 17th Lok Sabha to end, everyone is eagerly awaiting the exit poll results.

Published: 17th May 2019 06:08 AM  |   Last Updated: 17th May 2019 10:29 AM   |  A+A-

Delhi voters at a polling station during the sixth phase of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections (Photo | PTI)

Express News Service

NEW DELHI: With just two days left for the mega electoral battle to elect the 17th Lok Sabha to end, everyone is eagerly awaiting the exit poll results. But, an analysis of the exit polls that were done during the 2014 general election and in the state polls thereafter shows most of them have been way off the mark in their seat predictions.

After polling for the final phase concludes on the evening of May 19, various exit poll results will start beaming across the news channels, kicking off a frenzied debate on who will form the next government.

In 2014, too, several pollsters had come up with their predictions on the UPA and NDA tallies, but barring one, rest all failed to get read the public mood. While most exit polls had predicted a victory for the BJP-led NDA, none had estimated that the BJP will get a majority on its own. 

CNN IBN-CSDS Lokniti and ABP-Neilson had forecast 282 seats for the NDA while Times Now-ORG had predicted 249 seats for the alliance. The final poll result showed a clean sweep for the BJP — the saffron party alone registered a victory on 282 seats while the NDA tally stood at 336. 

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During the Uttar Pradesh Assembly election, which took place months after demonetization, it was predicted that the BJP may have to suffer on account of notebandi. The then ruling Samajwadi Party, in alliance with the Congress, was expected to romp home and the exit polls predictions were on the same line. But most of the surveys were found off the mark when the final results handed out a thumping majority to the BJP.

During the Delhi Assembly election, too, the exit polls went wrong in their estimates and none could sense the mood on the ground. The AAP made history by bagging 67 seats in the 70-member House.

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