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Himachal Pradesh election: Exit polls say BJP will oust Congress; Prem Kumar Dhumal set for third term as CM

Congress is on its way to losing one more state from its already lean kitty as various exit polls have predicted the return of BJP to power in Himachal Pradesh, with the current Leader of Opposition Prem Kumar Dhumal set to become the next chief minister.

 Himachal Pradesh election: Exit polls say BJP will oust Congress; Prem Kumar Dhumal set for third term as CM

Prem Kumar Dhumal. Image courtesy CNN-News18

Even before the voting happened, BJP president Amit Shah had announced Dhumal as the BJP's chief ministerial candidate breaking a party tradition of not announcing the name of the chief ministerial choice before the counting was over.

According to the CVoter exit poll, BJP is likely to get 41 seats in the House of 68, which is a 15-seat jump from its 2012 tally of 26. The halfway mark in the state Assembly is 34. The poll says that Congress will secure 25 seats, which is an 11-seat fall from its last tally of 36 seats, thus pushing it out of power in the hill state. Others will get two seats, coming down from six in the last election.

In the 2012 Assembly election in the state, Himachal Lokhit Party had won one seat while five Independents became legislators.

The swing in vote share trends as observed by the CVoter exit poll was evidently in favour of BJP in Himachal Pradesh. The vote share of the party rose to 47.6 percent this time from 38.5 percent in 2012. In the Lok Sabha election in 2014, the vote share for the party was at 53.8 percent, thanks to the Narendra Modi wave then.

For Simantik

The vote share for the Congress also went up from 42.8 percent in 2012 to 44 percent this year. The Others recorded a drastic fall when it comes to vote share slipping from 18.7 percent in 2012 to 8.3 percent this year with a huge swing of 10.4 percent.

CVoter Himachal Exit Poll : Vote Share
Party 2012 VS 2014 LS 2017 Exit Poll Swing
BJP 38.5 53.8 47.6 9.2
Congress 42.8 41.1 44 1.2
Others 18.7 5.1 8.3 -10.4
Total State 100 100 100 0
CVoter Himachal Exit Poll : Seat Share
Party 2012 VS 2014 LS 2017 Exit Poll Change
BJP 26 4 41 15
Congress 36 0 25 -11
Others 6 0 2 -4
Total State 68 4 68 0

In its exit poll, Today's Chanakya gave BJP a whopping 55 seats with an error margin of plus/minus seven seats while giving Congress a minuscule 13 seats again with an error margin of plus/minus seven seats. Others get none with an error margin of plus/minus three seats.

Notably in Today's Chanakya exit poll, 61 percent of the respondents sought a change of government in the state while 30 percent did not opt for change. Around 35 percent respondents rated Singh as a poor chief minister while 26 percent of those taking the survey thought he was good; 29 percent respondents said Singh's performance could be rated as average.

All caste including — Brahmin, Rajput, SC, ST and OBC — covered in this exit poll voted far more for the BJP than the Congress making it evident that anti-incumbency was in fact quite high against the Congress government.

The Sahara Samay-CNX prediction gave 46 seats to the BJP and 21 to the Congress in the Himachal Pradesh Assembly. The India Today-Axis My India exit poll gave 47-55 seats to the BJP and 13-20 seats to the Congress.

The Times Now-VMR and Zee News-Axis exit polls predicted that the BJP would win 51 of the total 68 Assembly seats in the state.

While the Times Now-VMR exit poll gave 16 seats to the Congress and one to another, the Zee News-Axis poll gave 17 seats to the party in power in Shimla.

There are a total of 68 seats in Himachal Pradesh, elections to which were held on 9 November. A party needs 35 seats to be able to form a government.

The final results will be out on 18 December.

Himachal Pradesh Exit Poll BJP Congress
ABP-CSDS 35-41 26-32
Zee News-Axis 51 17
News X 42-50 18-24
News Nation 43-47 19-23
Sahara Samay 46 21
Today's Chanakya 55 13
India Today 47-55 13-20

Among other exit polls, the NewsX survey predicted that the BJP would win 42-50 seats and the Congress, 18-24.

In a surprise to many politicians, S Chauhan had reported for Firstpost that the voter turnout was over 80 percent in around a dozen assembly segments. Most unexpectedly, Hamirpur district recorded the lowest polling while Sirmaur topped the tally. Dhumal contested from the Sujanpur seat in Hamirpur district but it wasn't motivational enough for most of the voters to exercise their right to franchise.

More than 37 lakh voters sealed the fate of 337 candidates on 9 November in the state and all electronic voting machines are secured in 100 strong rooms in 48 different locations across the state.

With inputs are PTI

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Updated Date: Dec 14, 2017 21:24:50 IST