India's top political strategist and JD-U vice-president Prashant Kishor has predicted a win for Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.
Kishor, who devised successful campaigns for PM Modi during the Gujarat Assembly polls and 2014 Lok Sabha elections, has ruled out Bihar Chief Minister and JD-U president Nitish Kumar as a contender for the Prime Minister post.
"Although Nitish Kumar is a top leader of NDA, it would be unfair to view him as a claimant of the top post even if BJP doesn't get a clear mandate," Kishor told reporters after meeting Shiv Sena chief Udhav Thackery on February 11.
Kishor also dismissed the rumours of helping Shiv Sena win the elections. "I am an active political worker now and a member of a particular party, so I cannot provide any such professional advice," he added. He also put rest to growing differences between alliance partners Shiv Sena and BJP.
"We are all a part of the NDA, so my meeting the allies is a routine exercise," the election strategist added.
Prashant Kisor - A darling of Indian politicians
Prashant, who is originally from Bihar, went from being a public health professional to India's top election campaign mastermind and a darling of politicians. His career rose after he helped PM Modi win the Gujarat Assembly elections in 2012 for the third time.
He then conceptualised innovative marketing and advertising campaigns for PM Modi such as Chai Pe Charcha, Manthan and a massive social media outreach, which is being described as a reason for BJP's thumping victory and an absolute majority in 2014 Lok Sabha polls.
PM Modi's rivals also sought his professional services. Prashant proceeded to work with Nitish Kumar and helped him win the Bihar Assembly elections in 2015 by mobilising the strategy and resources for his election campaign.
He also helped Congress party win the Assembly polls in Punjab in 2017 after the party has been routed in earlier elections.
However, Kishor's magic didn't work for Congress in Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections in 2017 where the party was desperately trying to form the government after nearly three decades.
In 2018, Kishor formally joined Nitish Kumar's JD-U and is being described as the party's second most influential leader.