Bengaluru, Dec 30: In a hard fought Karnataka MLC (Member of the Legislative Council) which were mired by allegations of luring voters with money and gifts, the Congress came out victorious.
The ruling Congress won 13 out of the 25 seats while the BJP and the JD(S) won 6 and 4 respectively. Two others were won by independents.The Congress this time bettered its tally by one when compared to the previous election in which it had won 12 seats.
Congress leaders say that they are happy with the result although they had expected three more seats. On the other hand the BJP says that it could have fared better in some areas especially at Ballari which was once its stronghold.
While Siddaramaiah can smile a little, he too would have hoped to have a few more seats. It was important for him to increase the strength of the Congress in the Upper House. The Upper House which has a total strength of 75 members and the Congress has very often been defeated on certain issues when the BJP and the JD(S) had come together. Today's result may not help the Congress too much.
Litmus test for Siddaramaiah:
The elections were considered to be a litmus test for Siddaramaiah. He had battled rebellion and nominated most of his supporters. All those nominated by Siddaramaiah have won the elections and this has ensured that he passed the litmus test.
The Congress won Mysore district which is the home town of the CM. The Congress also won in Bengaluru city district. Siddaramaiah said that it was a mandate for the Congress.
Today was however not a particularly happy day for Congress bigwigs such as Mallikarjuna Kharge. In his home town of Gulbarga, the BJP candidate won by a huge margin. In Veerappa Moily's bastion at Kolar it was victory for the JD(S).
The defeat at Ballari:
For the BJP there would be some soul searching to do in Ballari. The BJP's Channabasavva Gouda Patil lost by a margin of 1,598 votes to K C Kondaiah of the Congress. The loss at Ballari indicates clearly the fading charm of the Reddy brothers.
Since the mining issue rocked Ballari, the BJP has been on the decline. The BJP does realise that this bastion is getting away from them, but state leaders say that they will analyse the loss and ensure that they get their stronghold back.
In the Dakshin Kannada and Udupi seats, the results were on expected lines. The seats at Dakshin Kannada and Udupi were won by Kota Srinivasa Poojary of the BJP and K Pratapchandra Shetty of the Congress.
The Congress also won in Bidar, Raichur-Koppal. The Kodagu seat which was hard fought between was won by the BJP.
The BJP was also expecting to do well in Shimoga the stronghold of B S Yeddyurappa, former Chief Minister of Karnataka and BJP MP. R K Siddaramanna the sitting BJP MLC came third.
The Congress candidate, R Prasanna Kumar won this seat. The BJP campaign was hit by rebellion. Yeddyurappa was unhappy with the candidature of Siddaramanna and did not campaign as much as he should have. In Hassan the former Prime Minister H D Deve Gowda suffered a set back. The JD(S) candidate lost to the Congress.