Is the Narendra Modi-led NDA coming back to power? Yes, and emphatically at that, if the exit polls are to be believed.
Put together, they have given NDA around 300 seats. The Congress and allies, despite all the hopes they have been raising of a good showing, will end up close to the 125-seat mark, they predict.
The biggest surprise showing for the BJP will come in Bengal, where they are expected to end up with a double-digit tally, 14 according to NDTV's poll of polls. Odisha is set to witness a close fight with the BJP and Naveen Patnaik's BJD dividing the seats almost equally.
When it comes to UP, Akhilesh Yadav and Mayawati coming together will see them winning 29 seats is the prediction of the poll of polls. Congress will retain the two pocket boroughs of Amethi and Rae Bareli is the expectation.
BJP stands to lose 22 seats in India's most populous state according to these results when compared to 2014.
The biggest dampener for the Congress could be their showing in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh, where they formed governments recently. The picture for Lok Sabha 2019 from these three states is not too rosy for India's grand old party, if the exit poll results hold.
The other big state of Maharashtra is expected to head the BJP-Shiv Sena way with the alliance expected to win as many as 36 seats, according to the poll of polls.
In the south, the BJP is set for a comfortable victory in Karnataka, with the poll of polls projecting it to win 19 of the 28 seats. In Tamil Nadu, however, the UPA is likely to make significant gains and could finish with a tally of 27 seats while the NDA could be down to 11. The BJP is projected to get only one seat in Telangana and none in Andhra Pradesh. In Kerala, it could open its account by winning one seat.
Here are the predictions released by news channels:
Republic TV-C Voter: NDA 287, UPA 128 and others127
Republic - Jan Ki Baat: NDA 305, UP 124 and others 113
Times Now-VMR: NDA 306, UPA 142 and others 94
News Nation: NDA 282-290, UPA 118-126 and others 130-138
NDTV's poll of exit polls gives NDA 302, UPA 122 and others 119
India News: NDA 298, UPA 118, Others 127
IANS CVOTER: BJP: 236, Congress: 80; NDA: 287 (BJP: 236, BPF: 1, JD(U)+LJP: 20, Shiv Sena: 15, NPP: 1, NDPP: 1, SAD: 1, SPM: 1, AIADMK+: 10, Apna Dal: 1)
News 18: NDA 292-312, UPA 62-72
ABP-Nielsen: NDA 267, UPA 127, Others 148
Neta-News X: NDA 242, UPA 164, others 136
According to India Today-Axis, YSR Congress is expected to win anywhere between 18 to 20 seats in Andhra Pradesh while TDP will be down to 4 to 6 seats.
Exit polls are here but the wait for real results continue. As we anticipate May 23 results, the exit polls may provide an indicator. @NewIndianXpress takes a look at the numbers & what it means for all parties.@santwana99#ElectionsWithTNIE https://t.co/zDA5WtLJwb— TNIE@Bengaluru (@XpressBengaluru) 19 May 2019
An important health warning: In 2014, too, several pollsters had come up with their predictions on the UPA and NDA tallies, but barring one, the rest had all failed to read the public mood.
While most exit polls had predicted a victory for the BJP-led NDA, none had predicted the BJP getting a majority on its own then.