Cong-JD(S) alliance ensures no festive fervour for BJP

“Time for genuine introspection.” This tweet by BJP spokesperson S Suresh Kumar sums up the mood within the saffron party after the heavy drubbing it has received in the by-election to the three Lok Sabha and two Assembly constituencies. 

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It now looks almost certain that the BJP is headed toward defeat in the Lok Sabha segments of Bellary, Mandya and the Assembly segments of Jamakhandi and Ramanagara. It is only in Shimoga where the BJP is moving toward a clear victory. 

As it stands now, the Congress-JD(S) alliance seems to have passed the litmus test and there is now a case for a “secular” alliance that can take on the BJP in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls. 

The Bellary Lok Sabha bypoll was supposed to have been a nail-biter as the BJP and the Congress carried out high-decibel campaigns. However, it is turning out to be a one-sided contest - Congress’ V S Ugrappa has polled 3.70 lakh votes whereas BJP’s J Shantha has polled 2.19 lakh votes - a huge margin of 1.51 lakh. 

In the Mandya Lok Sabha segment, the BJP fielded former bureaucrat Dr Siddaramaiah, whose "clean image" it hoped could give it leverage over JD(S) leader L R Shivarame Gowda. However, Shivaramegowda is leading by 1.60 lakh votes. 

Similarly, the saffron party was confident that Shrikant Kulkarni could wrest the seat from the Congress. However, Kulkarni has managed to poll 42,671 votes so far against Congress’ Anand Nyamagouda who is leading with 71,787. 

As far as Ramanagara Assembly constituency is concerned, the BJP virtually conceded defeat after its candidate L Chandrashekhar backed off 48 hours before voting day on November 3. This reflects in the result so far - JD(S) candidate Anitha Kumaraswamy has polled 69,269 votes, whereas Chandrashekhar has secured only 9,502 votes.

In an apparent consolation, the BJP is sensing victory in the Shimoga Lok Sabha seat. However, the Congress-JD(S) alliance candidate Madhu Bangarappa has polled 2.22 lakh votes to put up a decent fight against BJP’s BY Raghavendra who has polled 2.50 lakh votes. 

“This is a clear message that people are moving away from the BJP,” Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president Dinesh Gundu Rao said. 


READ MORE

Karnataka bypoll: BJP's Shantha stares at massive defeat

Karnataka bypoll: Shimoga set for photo finish

Karnataka bypoll: Congress-JD(S) leads in 4 of 5 seats

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Cong-JD(S) alliance ensures no festive fervour for BJP

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