Survey says BJP leads in UP with 40% voters still undecided

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A new survery by FourthLion Technologies, a data analytics and public opinion polling firm on elections for the Uttar Pradesh state assembly says that 40 per cent of 138 million voters in UP have still not decided which political party they will vote for. UP is to vote in seven phases with the first phase starting on February 11, 2017.

BJP supporters at Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Vijay Shankhnad Rally in Meerut ahead of the assembly polls.

Around 2,513 registered voters in UP were interviewed in Hindi on phone between January 24 and January 31, 2017. The sample is representative of urban and rural voters as well as socio economic, age, gender and caste make-up.

Result of the survey:

  • 28% said they will vote for the Bharatiya Janata Party
  • 18% said they will vote for the Samajwadi Party
  • 4% said they will vote for the Bahujan Samaj Party
  • 1% wanted to vote for the Congress

Key to UP election with 40% undecided voters:

  • 40% voters who are yet to decide who will they vote for, hold the key to which party will have the more popular support. Here is the breakup of voters who are yet undecided:
  • 50% women
  • 45% of those between the age of 30 and 44 years
  • 42% of those living in rural areas
  • 43% of Dalits
  • 44% of those from Other Backward Classes
  • 43% of the poor

Neelanjan Sircar, senior fellow at the New-Delhi based Centre for Policy Research said, "People don't want to give away which party they support and so they say that they haven't decided." He also said that many people vote for the winning party or at times voters talk with family members and friends and take the decision a day or two before election day.

Prashant Jha, author and associate editor, Hindustan Times, said, "Recent electoral trends have shown that the first few phases end up having disproportionate influence over the electoral mood."

Yashwant Deshmukh, founder, editor, C-Voter, "Most voters make-up their mind much before the election and change their mind only if anything very critical happens." He added that some voters wait till the candidates are announced as they are sensitive to caste or religion of the candidate.

Praveen Chakravarty, a senior fellow in political economy at IDFC Institute, a Mumbai-based think tank, said that BJP, which had won 81 per cent of seats in UP in 2014 parliamentary elections, will win 2017 state assembly as it would take a massive shift of loyalties for BJP to not win UP election.

Who have decided who to vote:

Around 33 per cent OBC, 11 per cent Muslims, and 22 per cent Dalits support the BJP. Compared with that 29 per cent Muslims and 14 per cent Dalits have decided to vote for the SP. The BSP's main vote base at 40 per cent is Dalits, 22 per cent OBC and 16 per cent Muslims.

Present situation in UP assembly:

  • SP has 224 seats
  • BSP has 80 seats
  • BJP has 47 seats
  • INC has 28 seats
  • Other parties have 24 seats

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