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Lok Sabha election 2019: BJP garnered over 51 per cent votes in Karnataka

Against its previous tally of 17 Lok Sabha seats in 2014, the saffron party won 25 out of the total 28 this time while an independent candidate Sumalatha Ambareesh backed by it wrested the JDS bastion of Mandya.

Lok Sabha election 2019: BJP garnered over 51 per cent votes in Karnataka

Bengaluru: The Modi wave that swept through Karnataka enabled the BJP to garner over 51 per cent of votes, thereby decimating the Congress and its ally JDS eating into their vote share.

The JDS, the state's lone regional party, that had two Lok Sabha members in the previous Lok Sabha was reduced to just one this time as its vote share declined drastically compared to the 2018 assembly election.

The BJP garnered 51.38 per cent of votes, about 8 per cent more from 2014, according to Election Commission data.

Against its previous tally of 17 Lok Sabha seats in 2014, the saffron party won 25 out of the total 28 this time while an independent candidate Sumalatha Ambareesh backed by it wrested the JDS bastion of Mandya.

The JDS had fielded seven candidates in Karnataka but only one candidate, Prajwal Revanna, could win from Hassan constituency, a traditional JDS citadel from where party patriarch and former prime minister HD Deve Gowda had been winning.

Gowda vacated Hassan for his grandson Prajwal and moved to contest from Tumkur, only to be defeated at the hands of BJP candidate GS Basavaraj.

The veteran had fielded him another grandson and chief minister HD Kumaraswamy's son Nikhil Kumaraswamy from Mandya who too was defeated.

In the just-concluded Lok Sabha election, JDS secured 33.97 lakh votes, which is around 9.67 per cent of the total vote share as against 34.06 lakh votes (about 11.07 per cent of total votes polled in the state) in 2014.

In the 2018 assembly election, the JDS had got 67.26 lakh votes, which was 18.36 per cent of the total votes polled. On the other hand, its rival BJP got 1.32 crore votes, (around 36.22 per cent).

The BJP wave also swamped the Congress, an ally in the Karnataka government headed by Kumaraswamy.

Against its tally of nine seats in 2014, it won only one seat of Bengaluru rural this time.

The party got 1.12 crore votes, which is 31.88 per cent of the total votes polled whereas in 2014, Congress managed to garner 1.26 crore votes, which was 41.15 per cent of the total votes cast.

Both the Congress and JDS had contested the polls together under a seat-sharing arrangement.

Besides the Modi factor, the poor performance of the coalition partners could be attributed to the infighting and bickering among senior leaders and workers of the respective parties who allegedly worked to defeat their combine candidates in many seats.

In Mandya, several local Congress leaders allegedly joined hands with disgruntled JDS workers to defeat Kumaraswamy's son Nikhil Kumaraswamy who was making his electoral debut.

Nikhil lost to Sumalatha, a film actress and widow of popular Kannada actor-turned-politician Ambareesh.

In Tumkur too, Congress' sitting MP SP Muddahanume Gowda initially rebelled against the party's decision to give the seat to JDS under the seat-sharing pact but later relented.

The bickering among the leaders did not go down well with the electorate and JDS supremo HD Deve Gowda, who contested from Tumkur, lost to the BJP's GS Basavaraj.

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To compound the coalition's problems, a section of the Congress commenced the 'Siddaramaiah for CM' clamour.

Adding to its woes, a few rebel MLAs indicated that they would join the BJP.

One of them, Umesh Jadhav quit the party, joined the BJP and fought against Congress stalwart Mallikarjun Kharge from Gulbarga Lok Sabha constituency and defeated him.