Opposition Congress, on Saturday, seems to be on course to defeat the BJP in Karnataka, and form a government on its own.
The opposition party has established a lead in 112 constituencies, while the ruling BJP was leading in 74 segments, the latest Election Commission (EC) trends of counting of votes polled in the Karnataka Assembly elections showed. The former Prime Minister HD Deve Gowda’s Janata Dal is leading in 30 segments, and others in 5 seats. A party needs 113 seats to have a majority in the 224-seat assembly.
Buoyed by the initial trends, Congress said the message given to the BJP was to stick to public issues that matter, even as the saffron party expressed hope of securing the simple majority mark of 113.
BJP leader and Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai (Shiggaon) and Congress State unit President DK Shivakumar (Kanakapura) were leading in their respective seats. Former CM Jagadish Shettar, who quit the BJP after being denied to contest in the polls , was trailing in Hubballi-Dharwad Central by 2,614 votes. He was fielded there by the Congress.
JD(S) leader and another former CM, HD Kumaraswamy was leading in Channapatna against BJP's CP Yogeshwara by 93 votes.
Congress leader Pavan Khera said, "This is the message for the BJP that please stick to issues that matter to the everyday life of people and don't try and divide India." Former Chief Minister and senior BJP leader D V Sadananda Gowda said: "It is too early to comment on the final results. But certainly we will cross 113."