Is Jagan going to be the next CM of AP?
Jagan is increasingly likely to be the next CM in AP.
In our last prediction a month ago, Jagan was ahead with 87 seats which was a slim majority With the end of his padayatra across Andhra Pradesh, his lead has increased and the crowd predicts 97 seats for YSRCP. TDP is predicted to win 61 Seats.
Note: Our average error for the winner was 18% in 2018 (Axis was at 14%, Crowdwisdom360 was ranked 3rd)
Why is Jagan ahead?
Before we delve on that, let us look at the caste based vote share in the 2014 election (main castes only)
1. The Kapu Defection : Kapus form a significant part of the state of Andhra Pradesh. It ranges form anywhere between 15 to 30%. The presence of Pawan Kalyan is ensuring that many of the Kapu votes are moving to him. The Crowd predicts 13% share for Jana Sena Party. Bulk of the vote share losses for the TDP will happen amongst Kapu Voters. Bulk of Kapus are located in the coastal districts of Andhra Pradesh particularly East and West Godavari. East and West Godavari together make up for 34 out of the 175 seats. The TDP and BJP together won some 28 out of these 34 seats. TDP would suffer significant damage if many Kapu voters were to shift to Pawan Kalyan. This in turn would give numerous close fought seats to YSRCP.
2. Scheduled Castes: YSRCP was always ahead in this segment. Still in 2014, it managed to win just 13 out of the 29 SC seats in Andhra Pradesh. The TDP on the other hand won 16 Seats with 10 seats at a margin below 5%. Even a small swing (which is likely due to anti-incumbency) could deliver a harvest to Jagan
3. Rayalaseema: TDP struggles here in any case. Things got worse for it this year on account of a very poor monsoon. In 2014, out of the 52 seats here, YSRCP won 31 out of the 52 seats. With small swings, it can win another 10 here
4. Jagan’s Padayatra: Padayatras usually deliver better results given the extensive connect with the voter apart from keeping the leader in the news on a regular basis. On most metrics it appears that the Padayatra has delivered. This may deliver a few seats in North Coastal Andhra Pradesh which already has a higher incidence of Christian Population apart from delivering gains across all the above regions. Overall, Jagan has too amny opportunities to gain owing to the caste situation, anti-incumbency and a good campaign
Can CBN make a comeback?
It is kind of ironic that the CM finds himself in a difficult place inspite of stellar economic growth in the last 5 years. Andhra Pradesh tops almost all metrics whether economic or social.
Take example of Industry
In 2013-14, Telangana was at Rs 102826 cr and AP was at Rs 107407 crores
In 2016-17, Andhra is at RS 142651 crores while Telangana is at Rs 120005 crores
The success of Sri-City is now well documented
On Social Metrics too Andhra is one of the top performing States
Similarly on Labour wage growth (NREGA surrogate), AP is no. 1
Even on agriculture, the State managed to remain in the top-5 inspite of two failed monsoons.
So, can CBN pull it off?
1. He will need to come up with some form of partnership with Pawan Kalyan. For example, together they are hoping to win about 73 seats which is about 13 short of majority. Even if there is no alliance he needs to come up with some proposition for Kapus that they cannot resist (might be too late)
2. He will need to consolidate Muslim vote with the help of the Congress party. One reason why CBN shifted to an alliance with the Congress was pure signalling. The Congress itself may contribute 2-3% vote but an alliance with the Congress may deliver Muslim votes particularly in Rayalaseema. Muslim share by district is as follows.
YSR Kadapa – 16%
Kurnool – 17%
Anantapur – 11%
Chittoor – 10%
Many of these votes were lost in 2014 due to the alliance with the BJP. CBN’s strident attack against BJP is purely tactical, he wants significant gains amongst Muslim voters in Rayalseema as a back up to his likely losses in the Coastal districts.
3. Tom toming his achievements more would help. While it is inevitable that the opposition will point out to the many flaws, the fact is AP is a positive story in the last 4 years under CBN though it is not something that the ordinary voter believes in. It is kind of ironic given that massive control of Andhra’s media by the TDP. Still the messaging isn’t sharp OR voters have just shut their ears to even legitimate information.
Overall, it looks tough for CBN at the moment. Apart from some lucky break and some tactical mistakes by Jagan, this looks like Jagan’s election to lose. Will the momentum change or Jagan will finally become the next CM of AP? It may, we will wait and watch.