BJP won 929 seats while JD(S) won 325 seats in the elections which were held on August 31. Congress and JD(S) have announced a coalition.
Bengaluru: 8,340 candidates fought in 2,529 wards of town municipal councils and town panchayats on Aug 31. In the tightly fought urban local bodies poll (ULBs,) Congress secured 982 seats and the BJP won 929 in the elections, while JD(S) came a distant third with 375 seats, according to the state election commission results.
329 independents bagged the rest of the seats. Both the Congress and JDS have declared that they would form a coalition in ULB elections that have resulted in hung verdicts.
“Elections were held for three city corporations,29 city municipal councils (CMC), 52 town municipal councils (TMC) and 20 Town Panchayats (TP). Results for 2,662 of the 2,709 seats for which polls were held have been declared. With the combined strength of Congress and JD(S) securing 1,357 seats, they enjoy a clear edge over the BJP to seize control of a majority of the ULBs,” reported ABP Live.
“These elections were considered the first test of popularity of the Congress-JDS coalition government, which was formed post-May assembly polls when it yielded a hung verdict. The BJP had emerged as the single largest party in the assembly polls, but failed to shore up the numbers in its bid to form the government. The ULB polls were also considered as indicative of the voters' mood before the next Lok Sabha elections,” the report added.
“Reiterating the JDS and Congress' resolve, former Prime Minister and JDS supremo H D Deve Gowda said, "Wherever we can form a coalition government to keep the BJP out of power, we will certainly do that." Buoyed by the election results, Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy said it was a "befitting answer" to those who were saying that the coalition government was weak and would collapse soon,” the report said.
State BJP chief B S Yeddyurappa said he was expecting better results but was satisfied given the ‘money and muscle power used.’
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) blamed Karnataka's ruling coalition partners Congress and Janata Dal (Secular) for its defeat in the state civic polls held across 22 districts. "The BJP should have won more seats but we could not perform the way we wanted to because of the Congress-JD(S) coalition," Yeddyurappa told reporters in Bengaluru.
The party, however, is confident of winning a majority in the 2019 Lok Sabha election, Yeddyurappa said. "People's mandate is with the BJP and we are confident of a majority in the next year's general election," he added.
“The ULB elections were considered important for the BJP because it would help the party assess its popularity across the state. Before Yeddyurappa was supposed to face the floor test on 19 May, he had given an emotional speech and resigned as the chief minister. He said that he was stepping down even though the mandate wasn't for Congress or JD(S), and had called their alliance "unholy". Since then, the BJP had been targeting the Kumaraswamy government, asserting that it would not last long,” a report said.
In the 2013 ULB elections held in 4,976 seats, the Congress won 1,960 seats, while BJP and JD(S) had won 905 each, and independents bagged the remaining 1,206 seats. Thus, BJP fared better in this election.
The incident of an acid attack on a winning Congress candidate and nine supporters marred the results.
“Inayatullah Khan, who won the election from ward No.16 in Tumakuru -- around 70 km from Bengaluru, was taking out a victory procession in the morning when an unidentified person sprayed some liquid on the crowd and fled the scene, police said. Around 10 people felt a burning sensation and were rushed to a nearby hospital where they were administered first-aid. They suffered minor injuries, among whom Khan had the maximum burns on his face, Tumakaru Superintendent of Police Divya V Gopinath said. Doctors said the liquid might be some low-intensity acid like bathroom cleaner, the SP said. Police suspect the incident to be the handiwork of Khan's rival, whose name they did not disclose. Nobody has been arrested so far and no complaint has been lodged, the officer added,” the ABP Live report said.
TV9 Kannada reported that a Congress worker allegedly stabbed the mother of a JD(S) worker in Koppal after the counting ended there.
In a tweet, Congress communications in-charge Randeep S Surjewala hailed Congress for winning the ULB elections in Karnataka. He said that the people have accepted the coalition government's development policies and have "rejected jumlas of BJP".