What next after poll results

The Exit polls have predicted that Narendra Modi will sweep Gujarat for the third consecutive time while Virbhadra Singh will regain Himachal Pradesh for the Congress with a comfortable victory. We all know that Exit polls are not actual results and the outcome of these hyped up elections will be officially known only on Thursday. The polls therefore could be right or wrong and the science of psephology will be on test when the real results are announced.

But the interesting aspect of these elections has been that in Gujarat, the polls became a contest between Narendra Modi and the opposition including the Congress party. Similarly, in Himachal, it was a fight between Virbhadra and the BJP. Therefore, presuming that the outcome is on the lines of the Exit polls, the winner will be individuals and not political parties even if these two individuals belong to the two major national parties. The contest has been leader specific to a large degree and for either the BJP or the Congress to claim victory will not be an accurate way of projecting the reality.

Soon after the Exit polls results were flashed on various TV networks, an sms started doing the rounds pertaining to the Gujarat findings. It said: Some people in Congress are happy but most in BJP are sad. To translate it in the common man’s language it means that some people in Congress are happy because as per the prevalent perception, Rahul Gandhi played a role in the ticket distribution and these people were not consulted. In other words, for them the Congress loss there reflects that Rahul and his team made a mistake handling Gujarat and thus should be held responsible. It is another thing that the result would have been no different if these happy people had been involved in the ticket selection process. The results of the past two elections bear testimony to their ineffectiveness as well.

So far as the comment regarding “most people in BJP are sad’’ goes, it shows that Narendra Modi will assume larger than life role even in national politics in case he wins Gujarat. This of course will be at the expense of many BJP second generation leaders who for some reasons believe that they should be calling the shots once the L.K.Advani era ends and be in line for the Nation’s top job as and when the next Parliamentary poll takes place. But once Modi wins for the third time, their chances will recede as the Gujarat Chief Minister will be all over and with the manner his image has been hyped up by the media, he will be unstoppable as far as the Saffron Brigade goes. In short, Modi’s huge victory would not suit the Delhi based party’s leadership and could lead to a scenario where the RSS may reconcile with the idea of Modi leading the BJP campaign for Lok Sabha provided Nitin Gadkari is allowed to have a second term.

In Himachal, there are many in the Congress who are still trying to ensure that Virbhadra is kept away from the Chief Minister’s chair and some one else is made the head of the government in the event of the party’s win. This will be detrimental to the party’s overall interests.

But we still have to wait till Thursday to know how things will unfold. After all Exit polls are not the actual results.

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