The Bharatiya Janata Party is poised for a third consecutive term in Delhi municipal corporations with a brute majority, an exit poll conducted by India Today-Axis My India has predicted.
The survey places the Aam Aadmi Party, which rules Delhi assembly, and the Congress trailing behind with a huge margin.
Of the total 272 wards in the national Capital, the BJP is expected to win 202-220 seats while AAP and Congress 23-35 and 19-31 respectively, according to the poll survey. The voting percentage reflected in the polls give 43 per cent share to the saffron outfit while the AAP and Congress are almost equally placed at 24 and 23 per cent in the MCDs.
The BJP lead is evenly spread in all three wards. The North MCD, which has 104 wards, is expected to give the BJP 78-84 seats, with AAP and Congress getting 8-12 each. Similarly, the 104-seat North MCD gives the BJP 79-85 seats. The AAP is placed somewhere between 9 and13 wards while the Congress at 7-11.
The smaller East MCD, which has 64 wards, is expected to give the BJP 45-51 seats while the Congress 4-8 and the AAP 6-10.
'POLL RESULTS ACCORDING TO OUR EXPECTATIONS'
"Exit poll results are according to our expectations," state BJP president Manoj Tiwari told Mail Today. Attributing the positive survey results to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Tiwari said, "PM Modi has won hearts of people from sections of society. The BJP has taken all its decisions for welfare of India while the AAP has looted citizens of Delhi."
Tiwari said exit polls results prove while the Congress has lost ground across the nation, there is simmering discontent and anger among Delhi electorate against CM Kejriwal.
The survey results also indicate that the BJP has made new inroads in the national Capital, with the last-minute change in state leadership with an extra emphasis on poorvanchali voters having paid off rich dividends. The exit poll has predicted that 45 per cent of the poorvanchali vote went in favour of BJP.
This section of voters was a key target of the party when they handed over the reins of city unit to Manoj Tiwari in November last year.
The recent by-election results in Rajouri Garden assembly segment too proved this when the BJP's poll percentage in the constituency increased from 38 per cent in 2015 to 52 per cent in 2017. The seat saw a sharp decline of nearly 34 per cent in the vote share of incumbent AAP from 47 per cent in 2015 to 13.1 in 2017. In previous several elections, the party's vote share had remained between 30 and 35 per cent in the national Capital.
While AAP leaders were quick to point out anomalies in electronic voting machines, they were at pains to explain how an exit poll survey, which is gauged out of speaking to a voter exiting the election booth, can be linked with faulty EVMs.
Congress leaders advised patience till April 26 when the counting occurs. "These (polls) violate moral code of conduct. The results will come on 26. Let us wait till then," Congress leader Shakeel Ahmed said.
The exit polls also indicate that the BJP has succeeded in making a dent in SC/ST and OBC votes in the national Capital. Apart from 54 per cent upper cast votes, the BJP is also expected to get 41 per cent of the SC/ST votes and 29 per cent OBC voters that are also considered the traditional vote bank of the Congress and the AAP.
In 2012, the BJP bagged nearly 22 per cent of votes collectively in the three municipal corporations. In north MCD, the party polled 22.2 per cent, in South MCD 17.65 per cent and East 35 per cent.