Washington: Finance Minister P Chidambaram has advised American poll pundits not to waste time on predicting India`s 2014 election outcome as the Congress-led UPA government will be voted back to power for a third term.
"May I tell you in advance that your study will discover that India will vote my government back to power," Chidambaram told a Washington audience yesterday on the second day of his US trip to attend the annual plenary meetings of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.
Chidambaram`s brief remarks at Carnegie Endowment for International Peace came in reference to the "India decided 2014" initiative, which is to track the developments related to the upcoming general election scheduled for next year.
"I thought I may caution you, lest you waste too much time...," he said, amidst laughter from the audience which included officials from the Obama administration, think-tanks, academicians and corporate executives.
Responding to questions later, Chidambaram dismissed the notion that the rise of regional parties is against the national interest.
"They (regional parties) rise because national parties do not accommodate regional interest as much as they should," he said.
Describing India as a complex nation, he said, a national party in a sense is a federation in itself. If the national party does not accommodate regional aspiration there is bound to be breakout and a regional party is to be found, Chidambaram said.
"I do not think that rise of regional parties is detrimental to the national interests," he said.