Does the political establishment in New Delhi have a better idea of what has been recorded in the voting machines in Karnataka? Is the Congress’ fate really sealed as at least two opinion polls seem to indicate? Or is the media beginning to echo what it itself puts out?
Today’s newspapers provide an interesting lesson. Delhi-dated stories by “political correspondents” supposedly with an ear to the rooms and anterooms of the movers and shakers of the national capital, all put out the same line:
# Subodh Ghildiyal in The Times of India: “Congress would only surprise itself with a positive result in Karnataka…. Congress has prepared a list of alibis on why it might not do well…. The view is that the much-publicised return of S.M. Krishna to politics has turned out to be a “non-factor”.”
# Shishir Gupta in The Indian Express: “The Congress leadership is not very upbeat about the Karnataka Assembly results…. Congress’s Karnataka managers, however, still feel that they could have done slightly better if the high command had not insisted on giving 17 tickets to minorities, 11 tickets to women and two tickets to Christians…. Congress knows that S.M. Krishna’s magic has not worked with the urban electorate.”
# Ashish Sharma and K.P. Narayana Kumar in Mint: The farm debt waiver scheme has been expanded, “on the eve of what many see as another likely electoral setback for the ruling United Progressive Alliance in Karnataka where votes will be counted on Sunday.”