NDPP & BJP set to from Govt again in Nagaland: Big TV Exit poll – 2023

(Photo: Big TV)

Kohima: Nagaland will largely see a repeat of 2018 with the bottom line being the NDPP and the BJP set to form a coalition government once again. And perhaps these partners would nod a silent thanks to the Opposition for lacking in strength and purpose.

According to Peoples Pulse – Big TV Exit Poll in Nagaland state, the ruling NDPP is likely to get 20 – 27 seats, the BJP 14 – 21 seats, LJP 5 – 10, NPF 3 – 8, Congress 2 – 4 & others 2 – 4 seats.

Peoples Pulse – Big TV conducted an Exit Poll on 27th February 2023 in 15 Assembly segments selected on the basis of Probability proportional Methodology (PPS). Four polling stations selected from each Assembly segment. In each polling station 20 samples were collected. A total of 1200 samples were chosen such that the sample reflects the situation on the ground in terms of caste, religion and age. Gender was given equal representation.

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The Congress which was a formidable force in the state, has depleted to an extent that it has found candidates in only 26 of the constituencies in the 60 member Assembly. The party once described as a powerhouse threw in the towel even before the contest began.

The NPF ruled Nagaland for three terms but got weakened when the present chief minister Neiphiu Guolhoulie Rio walked out to float the NDPP ahead of the 2018 elections. Still the NPF managed to emerge as the single largest party in 2018 by winning 26 seats, but the BJP, NDPP and the NPP formed the coalition government. Later the two NPP MLAs merged with the NDPP.

In 2022, 26 NPF MLAs defected to NDPP. Later, the NPF was accommodated in government and as a consequence it became an “Opposition-less” government. This was because of the peculiar reality
where all the 60 MLAs were part of the government.

This election, while BJP-NDPP forged a pre-poll alliance like the last time, NPF is fighting it alone. Its strength has gone down so much that it is contesting 20 odd seats like the Congress. Neither Congress nor NPF can do any miracles. They will end up winning seats in single digit.

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Not all in Nagaland, or for that matter in some other hill states of the Northeast, vote on party lines. They vote for individuals of their choice. Had it not been so, BJP would not have won the 12 seats in the last election. The Nagas are predominantly Christians, expect for a couple of per cent, and they have nothing to do with BJP’s ideology. But BJP is a force in the state, thanks to the popularity of individuals and the party being in power at the Centre. Defections are common here. Politicians want to be a part of the government and not sit in the Opposition.

This election, the BJP went to people seeking votes after highlighting all that the Modi government has done – how people have benefitted from the various central schemes. The BJP had won eight of the 12
seats the last time in eastern Nagaland which have six districts and 20 seats. When a powerful tribal body, Eastern Nagaland People’s Organisation or ENPO, called for boycott of the elections in eastern
Nagaland demanding separate “Frontier Nagaland” state, it had increased the BJP’s worries. Union Home Minister Amit Shah, however, somehow managed to stave off the threat by convincing the ENPO to withdraw the boycott call. So, the BJP stands to gain again in eastern Nagaland.

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The NDPP definitely will have some advantage as it is the main ruling party. There is a perception that since the NPF has lost ground significantly, most of the seats it won last time will go to NDPP and BJP.
The NDPP is facing the biggest challenge from its own MLAs (including those from NPF who defected) and BJP leaders denied tickets.

There has to be some drama after all. All of them are contesting against NDPP, not BJP, after a tacit understanding with the saffron party. All those who will win will defect to BJP. If the BJP can marginally improve its 2018 performance and some 6-10 LJP candidates win, the BJP will have the highest number of MLAs. It will then call the shots during the formation of the government. But it is very unlikely that BJP will ditch the NDPP.

Peoples Pulse researchers visited all the 60 Assembly constituencies to gauge the mood of the voter and the dispensation towards the respective political parties. This was done in addition to the exit poll.

(Source: Big TV)

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