Forecasts for 2009 Elections

In less than an hour, the results of the 2009 elections will start flowing in. This is turning out to be one of the most exciting elections ever with no holds barred campaigns, shifting of course by many parties and the undercurrents of socio-economic change driving preferences.

The opinion poll forecasts went horribly wrong in 2004. The forecasts started off by giving 335 plus seats to the NDA and then towards the elections came down to 272 odd. But the seats finally were much lower and the Congress came back to power in a really unexpected comeback. The media was even more confident of the NDA victory.

The media tends to hype up the parties like BJP more ,because ideological parties tend to be more passionate in articulation of their views and in their fervor. This over a period of time before any election ,starts giving a slightly higher degree of false hope and momentum to these parties. Secondly, the silent voter, most likely of a mainstream non-ideological party, keeps a low profile and so does not go to rallies and this leads the other parties to underestimate the potential of their opposition.

The media is more circumspect this time. The psephologists are also more careful. The undercurrents suggest that the forecasts of NDTV and CNN-IBN seem to make the most sense. TN, AP, Maharashtra are going the way these exit polls have predicted and not the way the media read. This means the Congress will win about 160 plus seats and the BJP marginally lesser than 140. The UPA will be comfortably ahead.


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