New Delhi: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the ruling Samajwadi Party (SP) in Uttar Pradesh appear to be in a neck-and-neck contest in the state assembly election due early next year, with Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) projected to come third, a survey said on Friday.
The India TV-C Voter survey projects BJP to win within a range of 134 to 150 seats, while the SP is projected to win 133 to 149 seats, both short of a clear majority in the 403-seat assembly.
The survey projected Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) to win 95 to 111 seats, while the Congress, which has already started a high-voltage poll campaign in the state, is projected to win only 5 to 13 seats. Others, including independents, are projected to win within a range of 4 to 12 assembly seats.
The survey is based on a "random stratified sample" of 20,642 respondents interviewed across all 403 assembly segments between August 1 and 31, and the data has been weighted to known demographic profile, according to C Voter, which conducted the survey.
Percentage-wise, the BJP has been projected to get 27.79 percent vote -- with a huge swing of 12.78 percent in its favour -- compared to 15.01 percent that the party garnered in the 2012 assembly polls.
The SP comes next with 27.51 percent, a 1.64 percent drop from its 2012 vote share of 29.15 percent. The BSP comes third with 25.44 percent, a 0.47 drop from its 2012 votes share of 25.91 percent, while the Congress vote share appears to have dropped from 11.63 percent in 2012 to 6.19 percent in the current survey.
Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav leads the list of 'first choice for CM post' with 32.8 percent in his favour, closely followed by BSP supremo Mayawati with 28.2 percent.
"Any BJP leader" gets 26 percent support while Congress chief ministerial candidate Sheila Dikshit comes fourth with 5.1 percent.
The BJP is yet to announce its chief ministerial candidate in UP.
Asked whether they wanted a change in the current state government, 58.6 percent respondents answered in the affirmative, but 34.8 per cent said No, with 6.6 percent undecided.
The present UP assembly's tenure expires in March next year, and the elections are likely to be held in January-February.