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West Bengal: Exit Polls Predict BJP Gaining Ground Despite TMC Taking A Lead In The State

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee brusquely announced on Twitter, “I don’t trust Exit Poll gossip.”

Per the exit polls released by various news organisations on Sunday, May 19, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is set to gain grounds in the Trinamool Congress (TMC) stronghold of West Bengal. The Left Parties face an uncertain future in the state while Congress is set to secure a maximum of three seats as per the predictions.

ABP-Nielsen is projecting 24 seats for the TMC, Times – VMR gives it 28 seats, and C Voter awards the party 29 seats. News18’s IPSOS predicts 25-28 seats for TMC. Republic-Jan ki Baat, however, says that the party will win only 17 seats.

ABP-Nielsen projects 16 seats for BJP, with Times-VMR and C Voter both predicting 11 seats. News18’s IPSOS predicts BJP will get three to seven seats. Republic-Jan ki Baat, on the other hand, predicts a massive gain for the BJP — 22 seats.

While most polls predict Congress to hang in the state with just two seats, Republic – Jan ki Baat gives it a minor upgrade of three seats. News18’s IPSOS says it will win a maximum of one seat.

Also Read: Why It’s Important to Look Back at 2004 Opinion and Exit Polls

On the TMC’s projected losses, the party supremo Mamata Banerjee said that she doesn’t “trust exit gossip”. She alleged that the projected positive outcome for BJP was only a smokescreen for manipulating EVMs. Taking to Twitter, the West Bengal chief minister wrote, “I don’t trust Exit Poll gossip. The game plan is to manipulate or replace thousands of EVMs through this gossip. I appeal to all Opposition parties to be united, strong and bold. We will fight this battle together.”

The BJP ran a highly polarising, social media-heavy campaign in West Bengal, looking to increase its seat share to compensate for the projected losses in Uttar Pradesh and adjoining states.

Earlier in 2014 Lok Sabha elections, the BJP won just two seats, while the TMC got a landslide 34 seats. The Left Front managed just two seats, and the Congress got four.

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