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Amid Modi wave, Arvind Kejriwal’s popularity wanes: Pew survey | India News

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Approval ratings remain high

88 per cent of Indians hold a favourable opinion of Modi, while nearly 70 per cent view him very favourably, a figure that has barely altered since 2015, the one-year milestone of his term as Prime Minister.

Modi wave across India

At least nine-in-ten Indians in the southern states of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Telangana and in the western states of Maharashtra, Gujarat and Chhattisgarh hold a favorable view of the prime minister. The same is true for more than eight-in-ten in the eastern states of Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha and West Bengal and the northern states of Delhi, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Punjab, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh.

PM outstrips others in popularity

Public support for PM Modi far exceeds that enjoyed by his political allies and rivals. PM Modi ranks 30 points higher than Congress scion Rahul Gandhi at 88 per cent, and 49 points above Delhi chief minister and AAP convenor Arvind Kejriwal, making him the the most popular figure in Indian politics.

While majority of adults hold a favourable opinion opinion of Rahul Gandhi and his mother and Congress president Sonia Gandhi, public backing for Arvind Kejriwal has waned. After capturing the public imagination with a massive anti-corruption campaign, Kejriwal’s popularity has consistently dipped after coming to power in Delhi in 2015. Two years on, only 39 per cent Indians view him in a favourable light.

Why the public approves

The PM’s popularity is buoyed by the public’s satisafction with his handling of domestic issues. At least seven in ten Indians approve of how he has helped the poor and handled unemployment, terrorism and corruption.

Public approval of his handling of corruption is up 11 points and support for his dealings with terrorism is up 10 points.

Trust in the government

As a result, more than 85 per cent trust the NDA government, with nearly 79 per cent quite satisfied with the way the Indian democracy is currently working. Overall, BJP supporters are more trusting and satisfied with the Centre’s performance than Congress backers.

Where the PM falls short

PM Modi’s lowest ratings are for his handling of communal relations, with 50 per cent Indians critical of his policy with regards to the Hindu-Muslim dynamic and caste politics. Moreover, 52 per cent people are dissatisfied with his efforts to curb air pollution. Women (48 per cent) are particularly critical of how he has dealt with the issue of price rise.

Influence of military

86 per cent adults believe the military has a good influence, although the intensity of that support is even greater at 62 per cent. Again, BJP supporters (63 per cent) are more likely than Congress party backers (46 per cent) to say the influence of the military is very good.

Around 67 per cent Indians hold the view that human rights organizations and the police are a good influence.

Support for other systems of governance

While most Indians expressed great satisfaction with the country’s democratic apparatus, 53 per cent of them also support military rule.

At 55 per cent, support for autocratic rule is higher in India than in any other nation surveyed. And India is one of only four nations where half or more of the public supports governing by the military.

Roughly 66 per cent Indians say a good way to govern the country would be experts, not elected officials, making decisions according to what they think is best for the nation.

Positive outlook

About seven in ten people say that life in India is better than it was 50 years ago. Only 17 per cent say life is worse.

Despite a recent economic slowdown, Indians are upbeat about both current economic conditions and the future of their economy. More than 83 per cent Indians say the nation’s economy is good, and 30 per cent say it is very good.

Demonetisation not a major concern

Despite Prime Minister Modi’s decision last November to abolish high-value bank notes, less than half of the Indian population (45 per cent) sees the lack of availability of cash to be a major problem. It is noteworthy that the Pew survey was conducted during February 21 to March 10, 2017, when the process of remonetisation following the note ban was still underway.

Updated: November 16, 2017 — 10:07 am

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