As the polling in the all-important 2019 Lok Sabha polls - the largest exercise in democratic franchise anywhere in the world - has officially come to an end, the countdown for the deciding-day - May 23 has begun, when the results of the 2019 Lok Sabha Elections will finally be declared. While India is on the threshold of welcoming a new government, the Republic Media Network has broadcast India's biggest exit poll - the mega double exit poll in collaboration with the country's top pollsters Jan Ki Baat and CVoter.
An estimated 900 million citizens voted in thousands of polling booths in every corner of the country in the 39 days-long voting process. Vote-counting will be held for 542 seats in the Lower House of India's Parliament (Vellore in Tamil Nadu stands countermanded) and the country awaits with the crucial numbers regarding the composition of the 17th Lok Sabha.
While the exact numbers will be declared on May 23, Republic Media Network presents mega double exit poll a projection of how the seat-shares and vote-shares could turn out for each of the states and union territories of India, and put together, project whether the BJP and NDA will be able to repeat their historic mandate of 2014 and conversely, whether the Congress, UPA will be able to make a fightback from reaching a historic low. The projections are made after conducting extensive on-ground surveys all across the country following each of the seven phases of the 2019 polls.
NDA: 4 seats
UPA: 0 seats
CVoter vote-share projection:
NDA: 48.7 per cent
UPA: 38.9 per cent
Political scenario in the state:
Though having only four seats namely Shamla, Mandi Kangra and Hamirpur, the hill state witnessed a tense battle in the Lok Sabha elections that took place in the last phase on May 19. A BJP bastion, the state has seen a bipolar contest in its history, with the two national parties Congress and BJP in a direct fight with each other.
For the first time, Congress' six-time chief minister and five-time parliamentarian Vidarbha Singh and BJP's two time chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal is out of the poll fray. Though the BJP has been making inroads in the state since 1951, till 1977 Congress won all the seats here. In 2014, the state was influenced by the Modi wave and voted for the saffron party. But this year there have been waves of anti-incumbency against the party due to the increased import duty on apples. This election in the state a test for the BJP that is in centre versus severe infighting within the Congress.
The key contest in the state is in Hamirpur which will be a litmus-test for BJP's three times young MP and former state president of the party Anurag Thakur who is facing stiff competition from the Congress to wrest his party's bastion - the Hamirpur Lok Sabha constituency. The Congress which has won this seat only once in the past 30years, has pitted former athlete and five-time legislator Ram Lal Thakur against former BCCI chief Anurag Thakur.
The Lok Sabha election stretched for more than one month saw heated campaigning from all parties. While Prime Minister Narendra Modi, seeking a second term in the office, addressed a total of 144 rallies and roadshows this election season, Congress president Rahul Gandhi addressed 125 rallies in the 2019 polls with the elections also marking the entry of his sister Priyanka Gandhi Vadra as an official member of the Congress.
In the Lok Sabha elections 2019, there were controversies galore over the course of the polls, ranging from poll violence being witnessed in each of the 7 phases of voting in Bengal, to some shocking statements from leaders across parties, with the likes of Azam Khan, Yogi Adityanath, Maneka Gandhi and others being struck down on by the Election Commission, and others, like Sam Pitroda, Sadhvi Pragya and Kamal Haasan triggering mass outrage.
A number of Republic Media Network newsbreaks especially set the agenda for the polls, including the first interview of the Prime Minister's election campaign to Republic's Editor-in-Chief Arnab Goswami and his final campaign interview to Executive Editor Abhishek Kapoor. Alongside these were the sensational #MPsOnSale sting on sitting MPs who showed themselves willing to compromise the interests of those whom they claim to represent, the Operation Karz Maafi sting that exposed the falsehood in the Congress' farm loan-waiver promise, and numerous others.
The vote counting for the 2019 Lok Sabha polls will be held on May 23. Join Arnab on Republic Media Network for non-stop coverage of the sensational conclusion to the general elections here.