The second and final pre-poll survey conducted by leading Kannada news channel Suvarna News 24x7 and Jan Ki Baat has predicted that ruling BJP will emerge as the single largest party in the May 10 Karnataka assembly elections.
The pre-poll however placed Congress slightly ahead of BJP in terms of vote share.
The opinion poll, based on survey of over 30000 respondents across various districts of the state, predicted anywhere between 100 to 114 seats for the ruling BJP, 86 to 98 seats for the principal opposition Congress and 20 to 26 seats for JD(S).
The survey forecast a 38-40.5% vote share for the BJP while Congress expected to garner a marginally higher vote share of 38.5-41.5%. A higher vote share for Congress with BJP bagging largest share of seats has been defining feature in the three of the last four assembly elections in the state.
The second and final survey is broadly in line with the earlier opinion poll published in mid-April except for hinting at a slight decline in the prospects of ruling JD(S).
As forecast in the previous poll, the new survey too suggests that BJP's tally will be powered by a good performance in Kittur Karnataka region and sustaining its domination in Karavalli (Dakshina Karnataka and Uttar Kannada) though the party is expected to suffer significant reverses in Central Karnataka that it swept in 2018 state assembly elections.
In Old Mysuru region, the Jan Ki Baat opinion poll predicted that the BJP will win 14 seats while the Congress and JD(S) are predicted to win 26 and 17 seats, respectively. The JD(S) appears to have lost some momentum in its traditional stronghold of Old Mysuru region with Congress gaining further traction. In 2018 Assembly polls, the JD(S) had bagged as many as 27 seats in region, while the Congress and BJP won 17 and 11 seats, respectively.
In Mumbai Karnataka, BJP is expected to retain its 2019 tally by winning in 31 seats while Congress is expected to win 19 seats.
The Jan Ki Baat opinion poll also predicted that the BJP will win 15seats while the Congress is predicted to win 4 seats in Karavalli region (Dakshin and Uttar Kannada).
In Kalyana Karnataka region, Jan Ki Baat poll predicted that the Congress will win 21 seats, while the BJP is likely to win 16 seats and JD(S) is expected to win 3 seat. The JD(S) has been able to attract few powerful local candidates who missed out the tickets from two principal parties.
In Bengaluru region, BJP and Congress are expected to be evenly matched, according to the poll. While BJP is predicted to win 15 seats and Congress 14 seats, JD(S) is expected to win 3 seats.
Participating in the discussion hosted by Ajit Hanumakkanavar of Asianet Suvarna, Kannada journalist Prashant Natu noted that projected numbers needed to considered with number of caveats including potential fragmentation of Lingayat voters on sub caste basis in light of the series of agitations the state witnessed in the run up to the polls.
The survey was conducted by pollster Pradeep Bhandari and his team of over 50 ground staff.
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