Cong expected the Legislature to increase its gains; BJP-JDS alliance will fight again

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With 28 seats up for grabs in the upcoming 2024 Lok Sabha elections, Karnataka is a crucial battleground. The ruling Congress government maintains its stronghold and is expected to add a significant chunk of seats to help boost its national tally. The BJP, on the other hand, in alliance with the JDS, hopes to work its magic to replicate its 2019 seat share.

In Karnataka, the Congress returned to power with a clear majority in 136 out of 224 constituencies in the assembly elections a year ago. High anti-incumbency in the state and its ‘five welfare guarantees’ (griha lakshmi, griha jyoti, shakti, anna bhagya and yuvandidhi) helped turn their fortunes around.

On the back of its recent victory, the Grand Old Party aims to win a majority of seats, and in turn, contribute heavily to the national tally. Its leader Siddaramaiah’s pitch this election season is his party walk the talk, – navu nudidante nadidwe – He boasts about the implementation of the guarantee, and promises to continue fulfilling these promises.

The Congress has so far announced 24 candidates, with ticket allocations linked to “Vamsh” candidates, for which it was criticized; In 11 of the 24 seats, close relatives of party darlings are in the fray. Priyanka Jarakiholi, daughter of Satish Jarakiholi; Mrinal Hebbalkar, son of Lakshmi Hebbalkar; And Sagar Khandre son of Ishwar Khandre are some examples. The party is working hard to get its leaders to win by allotting seats to their families.

The party’s latest attack on the Center on the issue of tax devolution is also an arsenal used for elections. The Congress contends that the BJP will never defy its high command at the Center in Karnataka, that the Congress will fight for its fair share and claim that the people of the state will get “justice”.

So said former Lok Sabha member of Congress VS Ugrappa Businessline, “We are confident of winning maximum seats. Five guarantees have benefited everyone in the state. We have fulfilled our promises, while the BJP has failed to do so at the Center and the state. This is a battle between ‘Vachana Palna’ (those who keep their promise) and ‘Vachana Brashta’ (those who break their promise). The people of Karnataka are happy with our implementation, and BJP’s criticism against us has no solid basis and is not supported in fact.”

On the other hand, the BJP, after a clean sweep of 25 out of 28 seats in 2019, has slipped back on the back of the ‘Modi factor’. After the defeat in the assembly elections, the party is trying to regain its strength. This time, it has strategized to team up with the state’s regional party Janata Dal (Secular). A coalition strategy can benefit both parties, as their strengths are complementary. JDS contests from Mandya, Hassan and Kolar, BJP gains stronghold in South Karnataka, where it has historically been weak.

BJP’s Karnataka spokesperson MG Mahesh said Businessline, “We are confident of winning all 28 seats this time, as after seeing its performance in the last 10 years, the pro-incumbency will play well for the Modi government. The present Congress government is inefficient and incompetent; Their guarantee is derailed; And people are already tired of the system. Adding advantage this time will be alliance with JDS, which will help us gain Vokkaliga voter base.

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