BENGALURU: Riding on an overwhelming response to Chief Minister Siddaramaiah’s 'Kannada Asmita' card, the decision to recommend separate religion status for Lingayats and a slew of populist schemes, the ruling Congress will increase its tally of seats as well as the vote share in forthcoming elections to the Legislative Assembly, says a survey carried out by C Fore between March 1 and 25.
The survey, carried out at the behest of Congress, says the percentage of votes in favour of the party will swell by nine per cent to reach the mark of 46, while the number of seats will increase from 122 seats in 2013 to 126 seats this year. It said the principal Opposition, BJP, too will improve it score but at the expense of JD (S) to win 70 seats as against 40 bagged in 2013. The tally of seats of JD (S) will drop from 40 in 2013 to 27.
"Others" (independents and candidates of small parties) are likely to secure a miniscule number of seats with the vote share dropping to seven per cent.
This is the second survey conducted in nine months by C Fore, which had in an earlier forecast, predicted that Mr Siddaramaiah-led "Congress will win the polls if the elections were to be held today."
The new survey pointed out that when it came to picking the most popular candidate for the Chief Minister's post, 45 per cent favoured Mr Siddaramaiah, while 26 per cent backed state BJP president B. S. Yeddyurappa and only around 13% preferred H. D. Kumaraswamy.
It claimed that when Lingayat voters were asked whether they backed the state government's call to grant separate religion status to them, as many as 61 per cent said they supported the move, while 32 per cent said they did not support it and about seven per cent said they had 'no opinion' of the move.
On the other hand, the issue of Kannada Asmita, secured a whopping 92 per cent support with 59 per cent, agreeing with Mr Siddaramaiah that the BJP was trying to impose Hindi on the state. The issue of a separate flag for the state too was acknowledged well with 56 per cent backing the state's stand on the need for a separate flag.
The report of C Fore covered 22,357 voters spread across spread across 2, 368 polling booths in both rural and urban areas over 154 Assembly constituencies. It pointed out that 44 per cent of men supported the Congress while 33 per cent backed the BJP and 17 per cent were with the JD(S). "Women too supported the Congress, with 48 per cent of them are saying they will vote for the ruling party, while 29 per cent are with the BJP, 14 per cent said they will vote for JD (S)," the report added....