New Delhi: The BJP-led NDA has a clear edge over the UPA in terms of support base if Lok Sabha polls were held now and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh`s performance is rated below that of his government, says a opinion survey released Friday.
According to the latest survey conducted by ABP News-Nieslen, Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi is leading the race for the post of prime minister.
"If the Lok Sabha elections were to be held now, 40 percent respondents intend to vote for NDA (National Democratic Alliance) and only 27 percent would vote for UPA (United Progressive Alliance)," said a release.
These release said that survey data could be a major setback for Manmohan Singh as his performance has been rated "below average." It said people in north zone have rated his performance even poorer.
"Prime minister`s performance is rated below UPA-II government`s performance," it said.
It said the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) emerges as a clear winner across all zones (more so in north and west zones) and gender. Major support is seen gained from younger lot (18-30 years). Congress, however, is neck and neck with BJP in the southern zone.
The survey said more than 60 percent have rated Modi`s performance "as good/very good". Modi is chief of BJP`s campaign committee for the Lok Sabha elections and seen to be its prime ministerial candidate.
"Narendra Modi is leading the race (47 percent) for prime minister followed by Rahul Gandhi and Manmohan Singh. Modi is popular among voters from north, younger generation and affluent sections," it said.
"Across all zones except South, Narendra Modi emerges as the clear choice of the people for the position of Prime Minister of India. In south zone, it is neck and neck between Narendra Modi and Rahul Gandhi," it said.
It said majority of the respondents all across feel that Modi should be BJP`s prime ministerial candidate for the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.
"In a scenario, where it a competition between Priyanka Gandhi and Modi, BJP seems to be gaining more than Congress, even greater that it would have gained had it been some other candidate from Congress," the survey said.
The survey said 40 percent of those surveyed feel Manmohan Singh was responsible for poor economic situation of the country, but in the south, 45 percent feel that it is Finance Minister - P. Chidambram who is responsible.
The release said that a major fraction (42 percent) of people in north zone were unhappy with the performance of UPA-II.
The release said that at an overall level, people were in support of food security bill with 48 percent feeling that it is a step in the right direction.
The survey said that people feel that both Congress and BJP "were equally responsible for communalisation of politics".