Counting of votes polled in the Dec 27 by-elections to eight Karnataka assembly seats began Tuesday with the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) prestige at stake.
Around 74 percent of the nearly 1.3 million eligible voters cast their votes in the by-elections.
Seven by-polls were caused after the stilling legislators - three of the Congress and four of the Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) - resigned from the assembly to join the BJP. The eighth follows the death of JD-S legislator M.S. Siddaraju.
The BJP, Congress and JD-S are locked in a triangular fight in all constituencies, though several independents are also contesting.