Who will West Bengal Assembly Election 2016? Exit/Opinion Polls/Survey

Yesterday, the election commission of India announced the dates of assembly elections in the state of West Bengal. These elections will be conducted in six phases to insure people vote freely. At present, Mamta Banerjee lead Trimool Congress (TMC) is in power from last five years. In 2011, she overthrow 34 years old rule of left parties from the West Bengal with a landslide victory of 227 seats. In the 2011 assembly election, TMC has an alliance with Congress; however, this time TMC has decided to go alone and already declared list of its candidates.

There is a total of 294 assembly seats in West Bengal; therefore, any political alliance or party needs to win 148 seats to make next government in the state. The main fight in West Bengal Assembly election 2016 is between TMC, Congress, Left Parties (Communist Parties) and the BJP. So far, there is no news of any political alliance in the state and it looks that all political parties are going alone in this election. In the last assembly election of 2011, TMC won 184 assembly seats and it 2014 Loksabha election, it won 34 Loksabha seats out of 42 with Vote share of 39.3 %.

At present Trimool Congress looks to be a strongest candidate among all political parties and some of opinion polls (including an Opinion poll of Aaj Tak), it is predicted that TMC will win these elections. The biggest rival of TMC is Communist parties which enjoyed a vote share of 23% in 2014 Loksabha election. BJP saw a major boost in its vote share in the 2014 Loksabha election and got 16.6% votes (+10.6%). BJP again looks for another miracle to win the West Bengal Assembly elections; however, it will not an easier job for BJP.

Congress is now restricted to a small region of West Bengal and it is slowly losing its ground in West Bengal after the exit of Mamta Banerjee from Congress in 1997. In the present circumstances, the chances of TMC are very high in West Bengal. However, it is still to be seen what will the effect of recent communal violence and JNU incidence on the West Bengal election. Communist Parties and Congress can increase their chances in West Bengal, if they go far an alliance; however, so far, Communist parties have denied any such alliance.

Only on 19th May, 2016 we will get to know about the mood of people in West Bengal, till then we can only speculate. In my opinion, TMC looks to have better chances; however, things can change with time.

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