Narendra Modi leads Rahul Gandhi in PM race

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modi-and-RahulNew Delhi: Bharatiya Janata Party’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi is the most preferred choice for the post of Prime Minister in the four Assembly election-bound states – Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Delhi and Rajasthan. A total of 35 per cent voters want him as the PM as against 17 per cent support for Congress Vive President Rahul Gandhi as the next prime minister. When a CNN-IBN, The Week and CSDS survey in Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Delhi and Rajasthan asked an open ended question without giving choices Narendra Modi came first. Rahul Gandhi came second followed by his mother and the Congress President Sonia Gandhi with 5 per cent popular support.

The incumbent Prime Minister Manmohan Singh equaled Sonia Gandhi with the same 5 per cent support. While the BSP supremo Mayawati got 2 per cent votes, the BJP patriarch LK Advani, who reluctantly forfeited his claim in favour of Modi, got just 1 per cent support. The survey was conducted in only four Assembly elections bound states of Delhi, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh. The fifth poll bound state of Mizoram was not included in the survey. Modi is way ahead of Rahul Gandhi in Delhi and Rajasthan, but the gap narrows in Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh. In the national capital of Delhi, Modi has got 42 per cent support as against Rahul Gandhi’s 15 per cent. In Rajasthan, Modi has got 40 per cent of the support as against Rahul Gandhi’s 19 per cent.

However, both Modi and Rahul are engaged in a close fight in Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh. In Madhya Pradesh, Modi has got 31 per cent and Rahul has got 25 per cent. In Chhattisgarh, Modi has got 15 per cent and Rahul has got 10 per cent. In Chhattisgarh, there is also a very high no opinion on the issue. The sample size for Delhi is 2507, MP 2870, Chhattisgarh 1861 and Rajasthan 4427 respectively. When compared to CNN-IBN’s July tracker, Modi’s popularity has gone up in all four states. He was not named by the BJP as its PM nominee in July but he was the most preferred choice of 26 per cent in July. Rahul Gandhi’s popularity has also seen a marginal increase of 2 per cent between July and October – 2013. In July, our sample size was also smaller in all four states.

When the voters were given only two choices, Modi has got 45 per cent and Rahul has 29 per cent support in these four states but 26 per cent of the respondents chose to ignore both. In July tracker, Modi had got 39 per cent and Rahul had got 32 per cent. It has now widened further. The good news for the Congress-led UPA is increase in the satisfaction level with the Centre. It has gone up in all four states. The satisfaction level with the Prime Minister has gone up in Delhi and Chhattisgarh, decreases in Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan when compared to July-2013 poll tracker. When asked about Rahul Gandhi as Congress’s PM choice, Madhya Pradesh was the most enthusiastic followed by Delhi. The overall rating in all four states for as Congress’s PM nominee is 39 per cent. It is 46 per cent in Madhya Pradesh, 41 per cent in Delhi, 35 per cent in Rajasthan and 29 per cent in Chhattisgarh. When asked if they vote for the Congress if Rahul Gandhi is the PM candidate, the overall approval was 35 per cent. In Madhya Pradesh, it is 38 per cent, in Delhi it is 35 per cent, in Rajasthan it is 34 per cent and in Chhattisgarh it is 28 per cent.

When we put the same question about Narendra Modi, overall 49 per cent supported him for the post of the prime minister. In Rajasthan, his approval rating is 51 per cent, in Delhi 49 per cent, in Madhya Pradesh 44 per cent and in Chhattisgarh 30 per cent. The image of the Manmohan Singh among the voters is that of a wise and effective Prime Minister more than anything else. Overall 20 per cent feel that he is a wise and effective PM. In Madhya Pradesh it goes up to 26 per cent. Overall 26 per cent agree that Modi is a leader who takes good and strong decisions. It is the highest in Madhya Pradesh (30 per cent) and the lowest in Chhattisgarh (18 per cent). Overall 10 per cent feel that Modi practices politics of division and discrimination. To a question – who should be the PM, if the BJP comes to power, overall 48 per cent back Narendra Modi. LK Advani gets 7 per cent and Sushma Swaraj gets 4 per cent votes. madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan gets 5 per cent support. To a question – who should be the PM, if the Congress comes to power, overall 35 per cent backed Rahul Gandhi for the top post in the country.

Sonia Gandhi has got 10 per cent backing and Manmohan Singh has got a mere 8 per cent support. Interestingly the other Gandhi who is not into politics, Priyanka Gandhi has got just 2 per cent support. When asked about a possibility of a non-Congress, non-BJP Prime Minister, the BSP supremo Mayawati got the highest 12 per cent support. Both Nitish Kumar and Mamata Banerjee got 9 per cent each. Interestingly, 26 per cent of the voters want the next PM to be honest and 15 per cent want him or her to be decisive. To a question on the use of None of the Above Option (NOTA) in this election, 7 per cent said that they would press NOTA button.