Economy

Modi meditates as India mega polls near end

Modi meditates as India mega polls near end

Exit polls have predicted the return of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to power, sending the markets into a tizzy.

The exit polls on television channels on Monday projected that the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) will retain power at the Centre again.

The exit poll verdict is in, predicting the BJP-led NDA as the clear victor with big gains in Bengal and Odisha that will help tide it over losses in Uttar Pradesh.

Riding the exit poll projections that mostly point to the return of the BJP-led NDA government, the benchmark Sensex at the Bombay Stock Exchange jumped 1,421.9 points or 3.75 per cent Monday.

"Exit polls have proved to be incorrect and far from ground reality in many instances. I want to understand what the Modi government can offer over the next five years that it has not been able to do in the last five years". For instance, in the United States election of 2016, majority exit polls predicted a win for Democratic party's Hilary Clinton.

Vote counting begins on Thursday, and the election result will likely be known the same day. Congress leader PC Chacko also said that the results will be different from exit polls.

Exit polls have not only turned out to be a let down in India but also overseas.

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During the day's trade, the 30-share barometer touched an intra-day high of 39,412.56, led by gains in index heavyweights such as State Bank of India, YES Bank, IndusInd Bank, Tata Motors Larsen & Toubro, and YES Bank. The party pointed to the unreliability of polls in previous elections.

Communist Party of India- Marxist (CPI-M) leader and Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan dismissed the exit polls, saying they could go wrong and added that the CPI-M-led Left was going to win big in the state.

"Any indication of BJP alone getting a majority can lead to a sharp upsurge in equity markets and strengthening of Rupee. Did they come", asked Vijayan.

The predicted BJP margin of victory is bigger than opinion polls indicated in the run-up to the vote, when most surveys showed the NDA would be the largest alliance but would fall short of an overall majority.

India's upper castes, usually divided or supporters of the opposition Congress party, appear to have consolidated behind Modi, said Gupta, a veteran writer on politics and television talk-show host.

In Karnataka, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, where the Congress is in government, and in Gujarat, where it gave a tough fight in the Assembly elections, the BJP is predicted to hold on to its 2014 turf, losing just a couple of seats.