Ending nine years of political uncertainty, Karnataka’s voters delivered an unambiguous victory for the Congress by voting for stability and against the first ever BJP government marred by corruption charges, scandal and anarchy.
The Congress sailed through effortlessly, romping home with 121 seats while the BJP and the JD (S) stood a joint second with 40 seats each in the 223 seats that went to polls on Sunday. Election at the Periyapattana constituency was countermanded following the death of a BJP candidate.
Despite all the rumblings on ticket distribution and allegations of sale of tickets, its battered image at the Centre with alleged involvement of its ministers in several scams, Congress managed to register a big victory by decimating the BJP in its strongholds in north Karnataka and the coastal belt.
As many as 19 ministers including Deputy Chief Minister K S Eshwarappa, apart from deputy Speaker Yogesh Bhat and government chief whip Siddu Savadi lost the polls. Other shock defeats were of KPCC president and chief ministerial aspirant G Parmeshwara and Anitha Kumaraswamy.
The saffron party’s rout was quite evident as it failed to open account in six major districts including its strongholds in Shimoga and Davanagere, besides Mysore, Bangalore rural, and Chamarajangar. Victory continued to be elusive for BJP in Mandya and Hassan districts.
Former Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa’s tall claims of making an impact on the state polity failed miserably; his party KJP managed to win just six seats.