Even as BJP is celebrating its win claiming control over Karnataka, incumbent chief minister Siddaramaiah announced that The Karnataka government will be formed by the JD(S) while the Congress will support it. The party said it will meet the governor along with JD(S) leaders and stake claim to government formation, effectively edging out the BJP which emerged as the single-largest party. JD(S) leader HD Kumaraswamy is on his way to meet party chief and father Deve Gowda.

Congress Reaches Out to JD(S)

The Congress leadership has instructed Ghulam Nabi Azad and KC Venugopal to speak to Janata Dal (Secular) chief Deve Gowda. The Congress is exploring possibilities of forming a government in Karnataka in case of a hung House provided JD(S)-Congress together cross the halfway mark. As per the latest trends, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is leading in 104 seats, while the Congress is ahead in 78 seats. The Janata Dal (Secular) is at third place with 38 seats but holds the key to power.

What next for BJP in Karnataka?


As per law, the Governor has to invite the single-largest party for government formation, which in this case is the BJP. The saffron party then would likely swear in B S Yeddyurappa immediately. This government would have two weeks to prove majority.Congress should have allied with JDS: Mamata BanerjeeWest Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday said the Congress would have done much better in the Karnataka Assembly election if it had allied with the Janata Dal-Secular (JDS).Banerjee did not name the BJP but congratulated the "winners".

Yeddyurappa Wins Shikaripura

BJP's Chief Ministerial candidate B.S. Yeddyurappa was on Tuesday elected to the Karnataka Assembly from Shikaripura by 35,397 votes, the Election Commission announced. Yeddyurappa, 75, defeated Congress nominee Goni Malatesha and seven others in his home constituency.

BJP Set To Form Government in Karnataka

The BJP today appeared headed for a simple majority in the Karnataka Assembly, with its candidates leading in 115 constituencies, leaving the ruling Congress way behind, according to the latest trends available for 220 of the state's 222 seats where polling was held.

Reflecting the plight of the Congress, which was ahead in 63 Assembly segments, chief minister Siddaramaiah was trailing in Chamundeshwari in Mysuru by over 23,000 votes against his JD(S) rival G T Deve Gowda.In the see-saw battle in Badami in north Karnataka, Siddaramaiah was leading by over 2,700 votes against BJP's B Sreeramulu, a Lok Sabha MP and close associate of the controversial Reddy brothers.

B S Yeddyurappa, the BJP's prime ministerial candidate, was ahead of his Congress rival Goni Malatesha by over 24,000 votes in Shikaripura.Trends showed that another key player JD(S) led by former prime minister H D Deve Gowda was faring well in its traditional stronghold of Mysuru region, hurting the prospects of the Congress. JD(S) was ahead in 40 constituencies.

The BSP and KPJP were leading in one seat each.The trends also indicated that the BJP's footprint spread across Karnataka, save the old Mysuru region, where the JD(S) with its solid Vokkaliga base was faring well.
Several ministers including Ramanath Rai, Anjaneya, Umasri, T B Jayachandra, Revanna, Santosh Lad, Vinay Kulkarni, Sharanprakash Patil and A Manju were trailing behind their rivals.

Even as the trends were pouring in, it was celebration time for the BJP workers who gathered in front of the state party headquarters here and elsewhere in the state, chanting slogans, blowing conch shells and breaking into a jig.

The Congress was set to face severe drubbing despite polling 38 per cent votes against the BJP's 37.2 per cent.Though no results have been declared yet, Yeddyurappa's aide and Lok Sabha MP Shobha Karandlaje told reporters in Bengaluru that he would fly to New Delhi later in the day to finalise the date for his swearing-in after consulting the national leadership.

Polling for R R Nagar seat was deferred on account of alleged electoral malpractices, while it was countermanded in Jayanagar seat following the death of the BJP candidate. PTI

In the outgoing Assembly, the Congress had 122 seats, BJP and JD(S) 40 each, and smaller parties and independents 22.

BJP workers celebrate in Delhi

Celebrations broke out at the BJP headquarters here on Tuesday as the party appeared set to return to power in its southern bastion Karnataka.Bharatiya Janata Party workers dressed in party colours saffron and green celebrated by bursting crackers, distributing sweets and dancing to the tune of drums, outside the party office.There were congratulatory hugs amid loud cheers for party leaders.

The workers, who had come to the party office early in anticipation of a victory, assembled in large numbers outside the gates of the Pandit Deen Dayal Upadhyay Marg office. Many were armed with Holi colours.Several BJP leaders, including Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, joined the celebrations. Sweets were arranged at short notice amid rousing slogans of "Har Har Modi, Ghar Ghar Modi" and "Bharat Mata ki Jai".Some carried placards with pictures of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah. Many party workers wore saffron turbans.

Stalin congratulates Yeddyurappa

DMK leader M.K. Stalin on Tuesday congratulated BJP's Chief Ministerial candidate B.S. Yeddyurappa for his party's victory in the Karnataka Assembly election.

In a tweet, Stalin also told the new government in Karnataka to release the Cauvery water due to Tamil Nadu without defying the Supreme Court verdict on the river row.

Congress open to alliance with JD-S: Kharge

In a virtual admission that the Congress may fall short of a majority in Karnataka, party leader Mallikarjun Kharge said on Tuesday that an alliance with the Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) was possible."We will discuss the issue with the high command. I am going to meet Ghulam Nabi Azad and Ashok Gehlot and we will discuss," Kharge said here.

But he quickly added that it was too early to predict the outcome of Saturday's Assembly election. Vote count on Tuesday showed the BJP ahead of the ruling Congress with the JD-S at the third spot.Siddaramaiah trailing in both seatsKarnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah was on Tuesday trailing in both the constituencies where he contested, officials said.

The Congress leader was way behind G.T Deve Gowda of the Janata Dal-Secular in Chamundeshwari by over 13,000 votes, Election Commission officials said.And after leading initially, Siddaramaiah fell behind B.R. Sriramulu of the Bharatiya Janata Party in Badami constituency by 428 seats.

Congress concedes defeat

As the vote count in the Karnataka Assembly polls showed the BJP crossing the half-way mark, the ruling Congress on Tuesday conceded defeat.Energy Minister and Congress leader D.K. Shivakumar told the media here that the numbers indicated that his party was on the way out after five years in power.

Et tu Karnataka: Omar Abdullah

"Et tu, Karnataka?" former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah remarked on Tuesday as the Karnataka Assembly vote count showed the BJP crossing the half way mark.The National Conference leader took to twitter as the Bharatiya Janata Party appeared set to return to power in its only southern bastion.

BJP surges in Karnataka, Congress stunned

The BJP dramatically surged ahead towards the victory mark in the Karnataka Assembly election on Tuesday, leaving the ruling Congress badly bruised and the JD-S at the third spot, officials said.

Reports from counting centres across the southern state showed that Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidates were on the winning track in 105 constituencies while the Congress was in the lead in 70. A total of 222 constituencies voted on Saturday.

Any party or grouping will need 113 of the total 224 seats to secure a majority in the Assembly.The Janata Dal-Secular of former Prime Minister H.D. Dewe Gowda, which has been expected to play the role of a kingmaker in the event of a hung Assembly, was leading in 43 seats.

As the vote count progressed, BJP leaders became assertive, saying they were confident of taking power again in their only southern bastion. At the same time, Congress leaders began to speak about the possibility of an alliance with the JD-S.BJP leader and Union Minister Sadanand Gowda said that there was no question of any alliance with the JD-S as his party was headed towards a clear majority.

Union minister Prakash Javadekar, who is in charge of Karnataka, met BJP President Amit Shah in New Delhi.Analysts said the BJP was leading in Lingayat dominated seats and the JD-S in Vokkaliga dominated areas. Chief Minister Siddaramaiah was leading in Badami constituency and trailing in Chamundeshwari.

The BJP's Chief Ministerial candidate B.S. Yeddyurappa was on the victory lap in Shikaripura."We will win with a majority," said BJP spokesperson Gaurav Bhatia.The Congress was open to an alliance with the JD-S, party leader Ashok Gehlot said, as the party's top leaders met in New Delhi.

We have crossed half-way mark: BJP

The BJP said on Tuesday that it had crossed the half-way mark in the vote count in the Karnataka Assembly election."We are in a jubilant mood because we have crossed the half-way mark. We are confident of winning," Bharatiya Janata Party spokesman S. Shantharam told IANS.

No result has been declared so far. But the counting of the millions of votes polled on Saturday showed the BJP far ahead of the ruling Congress, leaving the JD-S at the third spot.

BJP Celebrates in Karnataka

Hundreds of BJP activists celebrated on Tuesday across Karnataka as the BJP appeared set to dethrone the Congress in the state.

Waving BJP flags and dancing to drum beats, the activists as well as some leaders cheered loudly in the party office here at Malleswaram. Many shouted slogans hailing Prime Minister Narendra Modi and party President Amit Shah.Vote count on Tuesday from Saturday's Assembly election showed the Bhratiya Janata Party almost touching the half-way mark in the 224-seat House. Polling, however, took place only in 222 seats.

Karnataka Assembly Elections: Counting Begins

Counting of votes for the Karnataka state assembly election has begun. Elections were held on Saturday in 222 out of 224 assembly constituencies in 58,546 polling stations in the state.A total of 2,654 candidates, including 216 women candidates were in the fray for the Assembly Elections this year.

The elections in Karnataka are being viewed by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) as its gateway into the South.Since the 2014 general elections, the Congress party has been defeated by the BJP in over a dozen states, drastically shrinking its political footprint.Today's vote count will decide the political fate of key players like Siddaramaiah, B.S Yeddyurappa, Malikarjun Kharge, and H.D Deve Gowda and HD Kumaraswamy.

The BJP is leaving no stone unturned to evict the Siddaramaiah-led Congress government in Karnataka and is looking to come back to power in the state with B.S. Yeddyurappa as its chief ministerial candidate. Interestingly, no incumbent government has been ever re-elected in Karnataka since 1985. The Janata Dal (Secular) is also looking to establish itself once again in Karnataka politics and is expected to give a tough fight to both the BJP and the Congress.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) fielded 223 candidates, while the Congress and the Janata Dal (Secular) fielded 222 and 201 candidates respectively.Out of the 224 seats, 36 of them are reserved for Scheduled Castes (SCs), while 15 of them are for Scheduled Tribes (STs). The elections in two constituencies, Jayanagar and Rajarajeshwari Nagar, both in Bengaluru have been postponed earlier.In Jayanagar, polling was deferred due to the death of a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate B N Vijay Kumar on May 4.

In Rajarajeshwari Nagar, polling was postponed after a bundle of fake voter identity cards was retrieved from a flat in Bengaluru's Jalahalli locality by EC officials on May 8.

In a bid to curb the distribution of cash, liquor and other items to swing electoral process, the Election Commission deployed three flying squads in every constituency, 154 general observers, 136 expenditure observers, 34 police observers, 10,000 micro observers, 3.2 lakh polling personnel and members of the central police forces at all polling stations. However, the election-governing body noted that a marginal percentage of Electronic Voting Machine (EVM) and Voter Verified Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) failures were reported.

Exit polls have said the Congress, led by Siddaramaiah, will emerge as the single largest party, while others gave the single largest party tag to the BJP. Most exit polls have predicted that former prime minister H.D. Deve Gowda led-JD(S) could emerge as the kingmaker if the result ends up showing a hung assembly.India Today-Axis My India exit poll has predicted that the Congress is likely to win 106-118 seats with 39 percent vote share and will be the single-largest party in Karnataka.

India TV-VMR exit poll has predicted hung assembly in Karnataka. It says that the Congress is likely to get 97 seats, the BJP 87, the JD(S)+ 35, others 3 seats.ABP C-Voter exit poll has predicted 101-113 seats for the BJP, claiming that the saffron party is likely to reach the 'magic figure' of 113 seats. It predicts 82 to 94 seats for the Congress, while the JD(S) and others will get 18-31 seats and 1 to 8 seats respectively.

Republic TV-Jan ki Baat exit poll has said that the BJP is likely to emerge as the single largest party with 95-114 seats. It has given 73-82 seats to the Congress, 32-43 seats to the JD(S) and 2-3 seats to others.According to Times Now-VMR exit poll, the Congress is likely to be the single largest party with 90-103 seats, the BJP second largest party with 80-93 seats.

It said that the JD(S) will win 30-39 seats and others 2-4 seats.NDTV's exit poll said the BJP will be single largest party with 98 seats, the Congress second largest party with 88 seats, and the JD(S) will be a kingmaker with 33 seats.

NewsX-CNX exit poll has claimed that the BJP is set to be elected as the single largest party in the state, with close to 102-110 seats, followed by the Congress with 72-78 seats and the JDS with 35-39 seats.The Congress had won 122 seats and the BJP 40 seats in the last Karnataka Assembly election in 2013.

Agencies