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|November 24, 1998||
Swaraj questions methodology of opinion polls
Delhi Chief Minister Sushma Swaraj today criticised the recent poll surveys as ''outdated'' and said they were based on conclusions made even before the campaign had begun.
''The first poll survey was based on information gathered between November 1 and 9, whereas we started our election process after that. How could the survey make any conclusions even before we started our campaign?'' she said while addressing a press conference in New Delhi.
She said the surveys were conducted by interviewing people at their doorstep and they spoke whatever was on their mind. However, to bring them to the polling station to vote was quite another matter altogether. The Bharatiya Janata Party, she claimed, always had a much stronger organisational set-up than the Congress in Delhi and when the voter went to the polling station, things changed in its favour.
It was therefore, her main task to motivate the voters, who were ''disappointed and angry over the developments during the past six months,'' to work for the organisation and bring them back to the polling station to vote. ''Today a machinery is needed to bring the voter to vote and poll results depend upon ballot. The Congress does not have this machinery.''
The second thing, she said, was that the BJP did not skirt issues but addressed them properly. The opposition had made onion prices an issue but the BJP accepted that and also gave the reasons for the price escalation and what remedial steps the government was taking.
Swaraj said the BJP would enter the polling tomorrow ''with a very meticulous planning.'' At least ten party workers would be present at every polling station. Out of these two would be inside the polling station and two outside. Two people would be kept on standby and four would remain on every booth to guide the voters.
She claimed that on the basis of her campaign in all the 70 assembly constituencies, the BJP would win with a confident majority.
Asked about the charges made by party leader and former chief minister Sahib Singh Verma at a press conference yesterday that the Congress had brought in ''bad characters'' to disturb the poll process, Swaraj said she had already spoken to the Lt Governor about it and assured that the government would ensure free and fair polling.
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