Karnataka Assembly election: Voting on 10 May, counting on 13 May
NEW DELHI : The Karnataka Assembly election is scheduled to be held on May 10 and the results will be announced on May 13, said the Election Commission of India on Wednesday. The election will be held for all 224 assembly constituencies. The election Model Code of conduct will be implemented from today.
The tenure of the Karnataka Legislative Assembly is scheduled to end on May 24, 2023. As stated by ECI, Karnataka will see a single-phase polling, on May 10, followed by the counting of votes three days later.
It is expected to be a close contest between the ruling BJP and the opposition Congress, with the Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) playing a possible kingmaker role.
Karnataka is the only state in the south where the BJP has been in power, and in the 2018 election, it emerged as the single-largest party, winning 104 seats in the 224-member assembly. The Congress, on the other hand, won 80 seats, while the Janata Dal’s (Secular) tally stood at 37. After the election, however, the Congress and JD(S) formed a coalition government, with the latter’s HD Kumaraswamy taking oath as the chief minister.
In July 2019, a rebellion by some Congress-JD(S) legislators led to the collapse of the coalition government, and the BJP’s return to power under BS Yediyurappa, the saffron party’s tallest leader in the state. In July 2021, Yediyurappa stepped aside to make way for Basavaraj Bommai, the incumbent chief minister.
The Congress party announced its first list of 124 candidates on March 25. Former Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah will contest from Varuna and Karnataka Congress president DK Shivakumar will contest from Kanakapura constituency. After the announcement of the Karnataka poll dates, the Congress party is likely to finalise the names of the remaining candidates for the upcoming election. Karnataka Congress chief DK Shivakumar and other party workers will hold a screening committee meeting in Bengaluru to finalise 100 candidates. The Karnataka Congress already announced tickets to six women candidates and eight minority candidates in the first list of 124 seats announced earlier in the month.
The names of former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and State party president DK Shivakumar are included in the first list of 124 candidates.Siddaramaiah will be contesting from the Varuna constituency while DK Shivakumar would be the candidate from Kanakapura. Congress will win the Karnataka elections and form government in the state. This is the reason why all top ministers of the Modi govt are visiting the state.
Rahul Gandhi, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and other senior leaders of the party will visit the state: Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge BJP is going to come back to power with a massive majority: Karnataka CM Basavaraj Bommai
Siddaramaiah said this would be his last election and after this, he will stay away from electoral politics. However, he added, ” The people of Kolar have shown me love and asked me to enter the contest from there as well. So I have asked the party high command to get a ticket from Kolar also.” Earlier on March 20, the Aam Aadmi Party on March 20 also released its first list comprising 80 candidates. The party has said it will field candidates in all the 224 Assembly constituencies in the state.
The BJP came to power in Karnataka in July 2019, after the collapse of the coalition government of JD-S and the Congress, which was formed after the 2018 election. The BJP managed to secure the support of several rebel MLAs from the coalition, who later joined the BJP and won by-elections. The BJP currently has 121 MLAs in the assembly, while the Congress has 70 and the JD-S has 30. The BJP also changed Chief Minister during its tenure, with BS Yediyurappa resigning in July 2021 and being replaced by Basavaraj Bommai.
The Congress, on the other hand, is hoping to regain power in Karnataka, which was once its stronghold. The party has been projecting former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah as its chief ministerial candidate, while also giving prominence to its state unit president DK Shivakumar. The party has released its first list of 124 candidates for the election, covering more than half of the seats. The party has also been highlighting the alleged failures and corruption of the BJP government and promising to deliver good governance and development.
The JD-S, led by former Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy, is likely to play a crucial role in the election, as it can tilt the balance in favour of either of the two major parties in case of a hung assembly. The JD-S has been maintaining an equidistant stance from both the BJP and the Congress, while also trying to expand its base beyond its traditional stronghold of the Old Mysuru region. The JD-S has also been focusing on issues such as farmers’ welfare, regional development and social justice.
The Karnataka state election is important for several reasons. First, it will determine the political stability and direction of one of the largest and most economically important states in India, which contributes about 8 per cent to India’s GDP and hosts several key sectors such as IT, biotechnology, aerospace and defence. Second, it will have an impact on national politics and the prospects of both the BJP and the Congress in next year’s Lok Sabha elections. Third, it will reflect the outcome of a polarisation campaign on religious lines which has been amping up for years – from the targeting of Muslims over what they wear and eat and where they can trade, to attacks on Christians over accusations of forced conversions, to a coarse debate involving the 18th-century Mysuru ruler Tipu Sultan and Hindutva ideologue VD Savarkar. The election will also be a test for the Congress’s efforts to corner the BJP government over corruption that, it says, pervades all levels of government.
(Bureau Report with Agency Inputs).