BJP have been outstripped by Congress and alliance partner Janata Dal Secular in the elections for Karnataka’s urban local bodies — seen as a test for the coalition government formed in May. Of the 2,628 of 2,709 seats where counting is over, the Congress won 966 seats, the BJP 910. The Janata Dal Secular has won 373 seats and Independents the rest. BJP chief Yeddyurappa said his party would have done better had it not been for the Congress-JD(S) alliance. The ruling allies contested separately, with the provision that if need be, they would join hands to keep the BJP out of power again.
The counting of votes for 102 urban local bodies across Karnataka began at 8 a.m. on Monday. The results of the civic polls, which took place on August 31, are expected later in the day or early Tuesday, a poll official said. Polling took place across the 2,633 wards of the state, spread over 29 city municipalities, 53 town municipalities and 23 town panchayats and in 135 wards of the three city corporations. A record average of 67.5 per cent voter turnout was registered across the state for the civic polls.
Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) were used for polling in all the wards. A total of 36 lakh voters were registered in the ULB wards and 13.33 lakh in the three towns of Mysuru, Shivamogga and Tumakuru. In all, 8,340 candidates, including 2,306 from the Congress, 2,203 from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and 1,397 from the Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) are in the fray for the ULBs, while 814 contested from the city corporations, including 135 from Congress, 130 from BJP and 129 from JD-S.