Congress scores in Karnataka, south rejects BJP

Congress won an emphatic victory in Karnataka polls on Saturday, pushing BJP out of power in the only southern state it ruled, and boosting its own prospects for the electoral battles ahead. Congress has won 136 seats, comfortably crossing the halfway mark in the 224-member Karnataka assembly.

Bharatiya Janata Party has won 65 seats. JD (S) secured 19 seats, independents won two seats, while Kalyana Rajya Pragathi Paksha and Sarvodaya Karnataka Paksha won one seat each. In the 2018 assembly polls, BJP emerged as the single largest party with 104 seats, Congress won 80 seats and JD(S) got 37 seats.

An incumbent government has not returned to power in Karnataka after a full term of five years since 1985. Also, this is the most significant victory for Congress since 1989. The Congress victory has come at a time when it is seeking momentum ahead of assembly polls later this year in Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan and Telangana and the Lok Sabha polls next year. Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated Congress over its victory in assembly polls.

He appreciated the hard work of BJP workers and said that the party will serve Karnataka with even more vigour in the times to come. Meanwhile, Congress’ performance beat the predictions of most pollsters. While many exit polls had said that Congress would be ahead, almost all of them could not accurately predict the scale of the party’s victory.

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