The Congress is set to pip rival BJP and form government in the desert state of Rajasthan ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, according to four out of five major exit polls. Since 1993, no incumbent party has returned to power in the state.
With 200 seats in the Rajasthan Assembly, the magic number is 101. According to the Times Now-CNX exit poll, Congress will get a majority, with 105 seats while BJP finishes second with 85 seats. India Today-Axis exit poll favours the Congress giving the grand old party 130 seats and the BJP 63. The C-Voter poll, meanwhile, predicts 137 seats for the Congress and 60 for the BJP. NewsX-iTV Neta exit poll also predicts 112 seats for the Congress and 80 for the BJP.
Only Jan KI Baat has predicted a hung assembly with BJP winning 93 seats and Congress trailing at 91. In the process, BSP becomes a kingmaker in Rajasthan winning 15 states.
In 2013 Assembly Election, Vasundhara Raje had led her party to become the Chief Minister. The BJP had swept the polls winning 163 seats with the Congress reduced to 21 seats.
Major players in the state, this time were sitting Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje-led BJP, principle opposition Congress with leaders like state president Sachin Pilot and former CM Ashok Gehlot leading their campaign. If the exit polls are anything to go by, then the Congress will now have to decide which of the two leaders will sit on the Chief Ministerâ€™s chair.
Mayawati-led BSP had also fielded 190 candidates, the Communist Party of India (Marxist) 28 and the Communist Party of India had 16 candidates. There are 830 Independent candidates. Even the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has also debuted in the state but is unlikely to make any impact.
As polling concluded in Telangana and Rajasthan on Friday at 5pm, all the television channels could air exit poll results of all the four assembly elections held in Mizoram, Rajasthan, Chattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Telangana.
Till 5pm, Rajasthan recorded a voter turnout of 72.17% in a largely peaceful polling barring a clash between Congress and BJP workers in Subhash school in Fatehpur where the two groups indulged in stone pelting.