Karnataka heading for a fractured mandate , JD-S to play kingmaker

 New Delhi, May 12 (UNI) Karnataka may be heading towards a hung assembly this time, with exit polls by various television channels showing Congress and BJP involved in a neck and neck fight while at the same time predicting JD-S to play kingmaker again in the polls.
While the India Today Axis poll, predicted that the Congress will win 106-118 seats followed by BJP with 79-92 seats, with JD(S) predicted to bag 22-30 seats and others 1-4 seats, the Times Now VMR exit poll shows the Congress as the single largest party in the state assembly with 90 to 103 seats while the BJP is predicted to win 80 to 93 seats and JD (S) is predicted to win 31 to 39 seats.

According to India Today-Axis poll, Congress will win 106-118 seats followed by BJP with 79-92 seats, JD(S) bagging 22-30 seats and 1-4 seats for Others.

However, ABP-C Voter predicted that BJP will lead with 97-109 seats, followed by Congress with 87-99, then JD(S) with 21-30 seats and 1-8 for others.

According to Republic TV-Jan Ki Baat, BJP will win 95-114 seats , Congress 73-82 seats, JD(S) will win 32-43 seats while 2-3 seats will be bagged by others.

The News X-CNX exit poll shows the BJP ahead with 102 to 110 and the Congress with 72 to 78 seats and the JD (S) between 35 to 39 seats.

NDTV’s poll of exit polls showed both the COngress and the BJP tied at 94 seats each, thus

throwing up the possibility of a fractured mandate.

The local Prajana News channel showed the BJP having chance of winning 102 to 110 seats followed by Congress between 76 to 80 while JD(S) winning possibly 35 to 39 seats.

However, the Suvarna news channel shows Congress having the chance of emerging as single largest party with 106 to 118 seats while BJP tally may be between 79 to 92. The survey by Suvarna news channel shows JD(S) having the chance of winning 22-30 seats.

The results seemed to be a disappointment for both the Siddaramiah and Amit Shah groups as both had confidently claimed that they would win 120 seats with ease.

The BJP and its allies, which are currently in power in 22 of India’s 29 states, are seeing the Karnataka polls as a gateway to the Southern bastion with a win in Bengaluru.

The voting ended at 1800 hrs and 70 per cent of the electorate voted amid tight security arrangements in 222 of the 224 constituencies in the state.

Counting will take place on May 15.

An estimated five crore voters will have to choose from 2,622 candidates are in the fray with the ruling Congress and its key opponent BJP contesting in 220 and 222 constituencies respectively.

The Janata Dal (Secular), which had been a kingmaker in the past, is in the fray in 199 constituencies with its alliance partner Bahujan Samaj Party contesting for 18 seats.

As many as 58,000 polling stations became a beehive of activity since the morning itself with the early voters thronging to cast their franchise in one of the most fiercely fought Assembly elections with Chief Minister Siddaramaiah attempting to shatter a four-decade-old record of incumbent government returning to power and BJP spearheaded by Prime Minister Narendra Modi straining every nerve to oust the Congress in their bid to free India from Congress.