The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is likely to retain power in Uttar Pradesh while the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) could sweep the polls in Punjab, the initial exit polls are predicting.
The BJP will also hold on to the reins of Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Goa, and Manipur.
As the final round of voting ended in the seven-phase elections of UP, considered a fair indication of the way things will go in the Lok Sabha polls to be held in 2024, the BJP-led alliance came out tops, albeit with a thinner margin as compared to 2017.
The BJP state government led by Yogi Adityanath, who contested his first MLA election this time, has faced several challenges during the COVID pandemic in India’s most populous state and the general issues of law enforcement during the farmer protests.
The polls also predicted a sweep for the AAP in Punjab, giving the Arvind Kejriwal-led party to bolster its presence on the national stage. The Congress may find it difficult to make any headway, as it faces a crisis of existence, trying to quell fierce infighting among its senior leadership in the state.
Uttarakhand and Goa may see close contests, but the BJP appears to have the edge in both states.
The exit poll suggest it is going to be difficult for the BJP to retain power in Uttarakhand that has a history of anti-incumbency.
Goa may see the possibility of a hung assembly that would leave options open for various political alliances to band together and form a government.
The BJP also seems to be on course for a win in Manipur, with the handling of the insurgency and clashes. Union Home Minister and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Amit Shah also claimed that the party will retain the power in the state. ‘The state has transformed from blockades, bandhs, violence, drugs to organic farming, medical institutions and more. PM Modi and our CM of Manipur have worked hard to end the differences between hills and valleys,’ Shah said on Saturday.
The counting of votes for the Assembly Elections in the five states will take place on March 10.
The BJP is in power in four of the five states. If the exit polls hold true, and the 4-1 scorecard remains, the BJP remains the dominant party in the national political scenario, leading up to the 2024 general elections.
Most exit polls also predicted a big fall for the Mayawati-led Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and a setback for the Congress, which had hoped to retain power in Punjab and make an emphatic return in states like Uttarakhand and Goa.
Stay updated with all the insights.
Navigate news, 1 email day.
Subscribe to Qrius