'Speculation, Slugfest For TRP': Congress To Not Participate In LS Exit Poll Debates; BJP Comes Down Heavily

Congress' Pawan Khera claimed that the party doesn't find any point of the speculations and do not want to encourage 'forces' that involve in betting over the results.

Congress CEC meeting in Delhi
Congress CEC meeting in Delhi Photo: PTI

The Congress announced that they have decided not to participate in any Lok Sabha exit poll debates on the television channels in the run up to the election results on June 4 as they mentioned that they do not want to indulge in 'speculation and slugfest for TRP'.

Home Minister Amit Shah and BJP president J P Nadda claimed that this decision of Congress is the confirmation that the opposition party has 'conceded' the Lok Sabha elections.

Congress spokesperson and media department chairperson Pawan Khera said the voters have cast their votes and their verdict has been secured.

"The results will be out on 4th June. Prior to that, we do not see any reason to indulge in speculation and slugfest for TRP," he said in a statement shared on X.

"The Indian National Congress will not participate in the debates on Exit Polls. The purpose of any debate should be to inform the people. We will happily partake in debates from 4th June onwards," Khera said in a statement.

Khera spoke to ANI on Friday regarding Congress' decision and said, "What's the point of speculation? Why should we indulge in meaningless speculation just to increase the TRPs of channels or to there is some force? There are some forces which are involved in betting. Why should we be a part of that? Everybody knows who he or she has voted for. Parties will get to know how many votes they got on the 4th of June. Why should we speculate?.. We are poised to win this election. INDIA alliance will be forming the government after the 4 June."

The decision was taken after consultations within the party, reported PTI.

How Did BJP leaders react?

Taking a swipe at Rahul Gandhi, Shah said in a statement that the Congress has been in a "denial mode" since he began playing a key role in its affairs.

"The Congress ran the campaign through the polls that it is going to get a majority. But it has now realised the reality and knows that it faces a rout in the exit polls to be broadcast after the elections tomorrow," Shah said.

The Congress does not have the face to take questions from the media so it is debunking the entire exit poll exercise claiming that it has no meaning, he added.

Shah said Congress leaders should not be in denial and instead introspect, as he accused the party of casting aspersions on the Supreme Court and the Election Commission when judicial judgments and poll results do not favour it.

"The BJP has lost many polls but has never boycotted the media or exit polls," he said, expressing confidence that exit polls will indeed prove the ruling alliance is getting "400-paar".

JP Nadda said the Congress's decision to skip exit poll debates amounts to an "unequivocal confirmation" that the opposition party has conceded the 2024 Lok Sabha elections.

In a post on X, he asked electors not to "waste" their votes in the seventh and last phase of the polls on Saturday as he said the Congress usually opts out when it doesn't expect favourable results but has no compunction showing up if it thinks it has even an outside chance.

"Their hypocrisy is not lost on anyone. Let no one in Phase 7 waste their vote on them," he said.

Nadda retorted, "The Congress's decision is an unequivocal confirmation that the Congress has conceded the 2024 Lok Sabha elections."

What is more disconcerting, Nadda said, is the Congress' 'antipathy' towards the largest democratic process in the world, which saw the participation of over 960 million aspirations.

"While Indians were electing their leader, who would lead them in the new world order, improve their lives, bring opportunities and prosperity, the Congress was working assiduously to undermine the very institutional process, on which rests our robust democracy's foundations," he claimed.

By deciding to boycott the exit poll exercise, they are bringing in question exercise carried out by several professional agencies, who have worked with thousands of associates to bring what people may have voted for, Nadda said.

"Is it the Congress's arguments that there is a big conspiracy, which includes millions of voters, and all of it is aimed at ridiculing the Congress for the next few days when the actual result comes out on 4th of June?" he asked.