HUNG: Bjp 104, 8 Short Of Majority; Congress 78; JD(S) 39

May 16, 2018

Mysuru/ Bengaluru:  Six hours after counting of votes in Electronic Voting Machines started for 222 of 224 Assembly seats, it is now clear that the BJP has emerged as the largest party. But it appears to be falling short of a few seats to reach the halfway mark.

Latest reports from Bengaluru say that senior Congress leaders have already spoken to JD(S) leaders to form a coalition government. Sources said the Congress has offered the Chief Minister’s post to JD(S) State President H.D. Kumaraswamy and prevent BJP from coming to power.

 At 2.15 pm, the Election Commission website announced that the BJP had won 36 seats and was leading in 70 seats, taking the total to 106 seats. Congress had won 9 seats and was leading in 65 seats, taking the total to 74 seats, JD(S) had won 4 seats and was leading in 35 seats, taking the total to 39 seats.Karnataka Prajnavantha Janata Party has won one seat and an independent candidate was leading in another seat. The majority mark is 112.

If the BJP manages to form a government in Karnataka, it will cement Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s popularity ahead of the General Elections next year.

The BJP will rule 21 of the 29 States after wresting another major State from the Congress, which has now been reduced to “PPP” or “Punjab, Puducherry or Parivar” – as PM Modi had jibed while campaigning in Karnataka.

Janata Dal Secular of former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda has performed better than expected and will get to play a kingmaker. Karnataka, home to India’s Silicon Valley capital of Bengaluru, is the first big  State electing an Assembly this year and will be followed by three more – Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh.

Voting, which took place on May 12, saw the State’s highest voter turnout (72.13 per cent) since the 1952 Assembly elections. Counting of votes was held across 38 centres in 33 districts this morning.

Celebrations erupted outside the BJP headquarters in Bengaluru, with supporters shouting victory slogans and waving the party’s flag as the results trickled in. BJP’s Chief Ministerial candidate B.S. Yeddyurappa’s house in Dollars Colony is beaming with party workers and supporters.

Yeddyurappa, who is yet to make a public appearance, is said to be meeting with his close supporters and workers reaching his house from across the region. Sources said that he is still closely monitoring the results and discussions have already begun on his swearing-in and possible makeup of his Cabinet.