K’taka assembly polls: Winning 16 seats, BJP fares well in Bengaluru | Bengaluru - Hindustan Times
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K’taka assembly polls: Winning 16 seats, BJP fares well in Bengaluru

By, Bengaluru
May 14, 2023 12:50 AM IST

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) grabbed 16 seats, up from the 11 seats in the 2018 assembly polls in Karnataka.

Despite the Bharatiya Janata Party’s rout in the Karnataka assembly elections, the party has fared well in Bengaluru and also improved its tally compared to the 2018 polls.

BJP fared well in Bengaluru despite its rout in other constituencies in Karnataka assembly polls (HT Archives)
BJP fared well in Bengaluru despite its rout in other constituencies in Karnataka assembly polls (HT Archives)

The Congress cruised towards a comfortable majority in the 224-member Karnataka assembly. While the grand old party swept Kittur and Central Karnataka, it failed to beat the anti-incumbency in Bengaluru, which has 28 assembly seats in Urban district and four in Rural.

The BJP grabbed 16 seats, up from the 11 seats in the 2018 assembly elections. Meanwhile, the Congress also won 15 in Bengaluru. After declaring the Congress candidate winner in Jayanagar seat, EC ordered recounting of postal ballots following BJP candidate’s request. EC will declare the result tomorrow.

The JD(S) failed to secure a single seat.

The BJP won Chickpet, Rajaji Nagar, Rajarajeshwari Nagar, CV Raman Nagar, KR Pura, Mahalakshmi Layout, Malleshwaram, Basavanagudi, Bommanahalli, Padmanabhanagar, Bengaluru South, Dasarahalli, Mahadevapura, Yeshwantpur, Yelahanka and Doddaballapur.

The Congress secured Chamrajpet, Gandhi Nagar, Shanti Nagar, Shivaji Nagar, Sarvagnanagar, Hebbal, Pulakeshi Nagar, BTM Layout, Govindarajanagar, Vijayanagar, Anekal, Byatarayanapura, Hosakote, Devanahalli and Nelamangala.

Both the parties had deployed star campaigners to secure Bengaluru, a city that is a matter of prestige and a power centre that could boost prospects in the 2014 general elections. Three days before the polls, Bengaluru saw high-voltage campaigns in and around the city. Thousands had filled the streets of the IT hub as Prime Minister Narendra Modi waved at the crowd during his 36-km roadshow, split into two days. Meanwhile, Priyanka Gandhi campaigned for candidates in Bengaluru for two days, which came as a morale booster for party workers.

Political analyst Chambi Puranik said the results indicate that the BJP has succeeded in securing the urban voters as compared to the rural population in the state. “The urban electorate votes differently compared to rural areas. The city is full of elite and educated people. Those are the ones who support the saffron party. The upper caste people and outsiders who have come to the city as investors also lean towards the BJP, probably looking at the central BJP leadership and Modi factor,” Puranik said.

The capital city has been grappling with an array of civic issues due to unrestricted growth and lack of governance, that came to the fore in the run to the Assembly elections. In spite of exacerbated infrastructure challenges and resentment against the current leadership, a huge chunk of Bengalureans stayed away from polling yet again, recording an average of 54.53% turnout.

Anti-incumbency which some analysts had expected to affect BJP’s prospects in Bengaluru seems to have failed to do so. In Mahadevapura, incumbent MLA Arvind Limbavali’s wife Manjula has secured the seat. The BJP had fielded the Limbavali’s wife to beat anti-incumbency.

In fact, the past election results also show that 16 of the 28 assembly seats in Bengaluru Urban have been electing the same MLA since 2008.

With the capital city being the only grace for the BJP, win would give them a strong base in the 2024 general elections. It would also mean that they would have a control over the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagare Palike (BBMP), which has been functioning without an elected council since September 2020, and the development of the city now rests on them, experts said.

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