PM Narendra Modi addressing a rally in Vijayapura on May 8 | express
VIJAYAPURA: Minister MB Patil-led district Congress was on high expectations. It was expected to win all the constituencies in the district. But it managed to win only three seats and lost in the remaining five.
In 2008, the Congress won seven constituencies. Internal disputes, selection of candidates, Veerashaiva-Lingayat issue and the Modi wave worked in favour of opponents, according to observers.
Congress retained Babaleshwar, Indi, and Basavana Bagewadi seats. MB Patil is the only contestant to register a win with a lead of more than 20,000 votes and the remaining winning Congress candidates won by less than 10,000 votes. In last week of electioneering, former Congress president Sonia Gandhi campaigned at Vijayapura, which was her only election rally in the state ahead of polls. But it did not help the party much.
The Congress lost in Bijapur City, Muddibehal, Nagthan and Devara Hiparagi. This result led to JD(S) opening an account in Nagthan. The wave was in favour of Congress, but it swung towards BJP after Modi’s rally on May 8 as the party won at Bijapur City, Devara Hiparagi and Muddibehal, pundits say.
KPCC spokesperson S M Patil Ganihar said, “In a few constituencies, there was unhappiness within the party workers over candidates. In Nagthan, we announced the candidate’s name on the last date of filing of nominations and failed to come up with proper tactics against the opponents. However, there was a neck-to-neck fight in all the constituencies and we lost the polls by small margins. We are happy with the result and in future, we will come up with better plans to counter the opponents.”