In a straight contest between Narendra Modi and Rahul Gandhi for prime ministership, Modi would emerge winner by a long margin, an IANS-CVoter poll survey has revealed.
The survey, released on Monday, showed that the Congress president’s stock has dipped steadily just as the Prime Minister’s has risen. The survey has a cumulative sample size of 1,05,000 since January 1 and a weekly addition of 33,000.
“When we presented the respondents with a binary choice between Rahul Gandhi and Narendra Modi for PM’s post, the results were similar. Rahul Gandhi was asserted as the PM choice by a record 38 per cent respondents on January 1, 2019, ever since he has declined to 34.5 per cent. PM Modi’s approval on the other hand has risen from 51 per cent to 58 per cent. The differential in net approval ratings has been even more stark, from a relatively thin margin of 12 per cent it has now soared to 23 per cvent in favor of PM Modi,” the survey said.
The survey showed a sharply rising approval graph for Modi in the immediate context of the Balakote air strike on February 26 when it was seen at 56.64 per cent as opposed to 32.27 for Gandhi. The next day, February 27, the number of respondents showing approval for the Prime Minister went up marginally to 57.84 per cent as opposed to 31.08 per cent for Gandhi.
Then on March 1, the day IAF fighter pilot Abhinandan was released by Pakistan, the Prime Minister’s approval rating crossed 60 per cent for the first time since January 1. The IANS-CVoter survey placed his approval at 60.04 per cent as opposed to Gandhi’s at 29.52 per cent on that day. On March 2, this figure went up to 61.7 per cent. The highest approval was reached on March 6 — 64.65 per cent — as opposed to 26.05 per cent for the Congress president.
The survey notes: “In terms of leadership it is still a one-horse race as PM Modi leads his nearest rival by a wide margin and continues to be an asset to his party. Rahul Gandhi’s rising trend has hit a roadblock and January 2019 has given way to March 2019 which seems to be a different beast altogether.”
The release of the Congress party’s manifesto on April 2 did not boost Gandhi’s approval by much — going up a shade from 33.58 per cent on April 2 to 34.32 per cent on April 3 (Modi’s approval was 57.69 on the day) to 34.51 per cent on April 4 when approval for Modi was at a very comfortable 58.01 per cent.