CNN IBN which is trying to steal a march over NDTV in Poll related coverage in India has come up with the first pre poll election survey regarding Karnataka Polls. Covering a sample size of 5124 , CNN IBN is going to town with its prediction that Congress would form the next Government in Karnataka with a clear majority of 114 seats in a 224 seat assembly.While CNN-IBN has stuck its neck out with this prediction, discerning observers in Karnataka are not convinced about the reliability of this survey.Congress has the legacy of the Dharm Singh Government which even the survey itself quotes as a Government less appreciated than that of the JDS-BJP coalition by a huge margin. Entire Karnataka knows that BJP is a party which was cheated by the JDS and hence carries a wide spread sympathy at all levels.  The only change that has occurred recently is the entry of S M Krishna into the Poll campaign. If there has to be any positive swing of votes in favour of Congress it has to be because of him. However public have already perceived that he is an unwanted guest in the Congress party and unlikely to carry weight after the election. He was even earlier popular only in the Cities and his re-emergence can only affect some of the City constituencies where people still appreciate him as a good administrator .But people also know that he is not likely to be preferred as a CM even if he wins unless the result is a big sweep. With most candidates not being his followers, it is unlikely that he would be given the CM’s post even if Congress emerges as the single largest party.The real perceived leaders of Congress in this election are  Siddaramaiah and Mallikarjun Kharge and Congress will win or lose based on these two leader’s hold on the electorate, one in South Karnataka and the other in North Karnataka. There hold over the voters is however not considered sufficient to get any new voters into the fold of Congress.The dissensions in Congress also cannot have any positive impact on its vote share with too many rebel candidates at fray and no clear indication of who is the CM candidate.The anti-incumbency factor cannot work in favour of Congress since Yediyurappa would be sharing the anti incumbency swing because Kumaraswamy has been considered the incumbent CM in the immediate past and Yediyurappa’s term was too short to be of any significance.Under the circumtances the estimate of the survey that there will be 4% swing in favour of Congress with both BJP and JDS losing 1% each is not a correct estimate of the public mood. It is also not correct to say that BSP will not get more than 2% of the votes.In many of the constituencies the fight would be between BJP and JDS and Congress would be the also ran. Hence the swing predictions and seat predictions are completely off the mark.If we make a simple guesstimate of the voter’s mood swing, we can expect that Congress would lose around 5% of its previous vote share while JDS would lose around 7% of its vote share. This 12 % swing away from these two parties may be shared by BSP with 4% and BJP with 8%. There is no scientific basis for this prediction except a subjective estimate based on the moods of electorate gathered from different places informally since the last few months when the election possibility was being discussed.It appears that the poll has been planted by Congress sympathizers to improve the morale of its cadre which has been adversely affected by the fight for tickets.There will ofcourse be another poll from NDTV which is a traditional supporter of Congress and CNN IBN has only succeeded in cornering NDTV with the first off the mark poll in favour of Congress.Voters will watch such gimmicks in amusement and in the end it would be the credibility of CNN-IBN which would be at stake.

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