Odisha Sun Times Political Bureau
Bhubaneswar, May 15 :
Who will win how many seats in Odisha ?
With less than a day to go before the counting of votes, everybody seems to be asking everybody else the same question : come on, tell me, what’s your guess ?
Just look at the elastic range of guess-work and you would know how funny it can get.
Depending on who you are talking to, the projection of seats for the BJD in the state Assembly could be as low as 55 and as high as 100 while in case of BJP the range could vary between 17 and 45. Although no one appears keen on finding out how many seats the Congress is likely to get, the number is between 25 and 70, depending again on who you are talking to.
Forget about the numbers now, one newspaper in Odisha has even published the names of the winners in each of the 147 Assembly and 21 Lok Sabha seats. Thankfully, it has stopped short of naming the new ministers along with their portfolios !
The interesting part is, people from opposite sides of the political spectrum are quoting from the same holy scripture – the Special Branch report ! All the figures we mentioned above have apparently been projected ‘on the basis of the mythical Special Branch report’.
Looks like the Special Branch has custom designed reports for each political party in the state. After all, isn’t Special Branch a special part of the please-all Naveen government, you tell yourself.
What amuses one no end is the faith that the people have in the Special Branch’s supra-human intelligence and uncanny ability to read the EVMs ahead of the real counting. One wonders why these gifted men in khaki do not think of fetching hefty revenues for the state by taking up survey jobs for media houses, who spend fortunes on the game of poll gambling !
A BJD government for the fourth time ? Hung Assembly ? A BJD-BJP coalition government – with or without Naveen Patnaik as its head ? Or even a BJD government with outside support from the Congress ?
Will BJD get 16 or 10 Lok Sabha seats ? And, will it be 10 or just 4 for BJP ?
Don’t ask us, for your guess is as good, as comic or as pathetic as ours.