Monday, 23 July, 2018

Exit polls are just for entertainment: Siddaramaiah

Karnataka chief minister Siddaramaiah after voting in the Karnataka Assembly Elections at Hundi village Mysuru on Saturday Karnataka chief minister Siddaramaiah after voting in the Karnataka Assembly Elections at Hundi village Mysuru on Saturday
Olivia Ford | 14 May, 2018, 06:06

"If the high command decides to make a Dalit the chief minister, I will give it the go ahead".

The Assembly Elections in Karnataka witnessed the highest voter turnout in the state in over 35 years. "Barring a few polling stations, voting has been completed at nearly all", Senior Deputy Election Commissioner Umesh Sinha told reporters here. The BJP emerged as the single largest party with 79 of the 224 seats, followed by the Congress with 65. They put the Congress tally at 73-82 and 87-99, respectively, and saw JDS cornering 32-43 and 21-30 seats. These are my figures. "My calculations have never gone wrong in my political career", he said.

BJP state chief and its chief ministerial candidate BS Yeddyurappa said his party is headed towards a landslide victory with the support of the people. Only one predicted a Congress majority. "We are leaving every possibility open", he said. Yeddyurappa claimed there was a strong wave in BJP's favour and public ire against Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and the Congress.

Siddaramaiah also criticised Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP for ordering income-tax raids against Congress workers and well-wishers out of desperation because the BJP was sure to lose the elections.

Congress leaders in politically crucial hubs like Badami, Mudhol and Jamkhandi admitted that to a "large extent", the party's move on Lingayats was "hasty" as several community leaders and people at large realised that the decision was chiefly going against the interest of the' Veerashaivas'.

He also said re-polling would take place at Hebbal assembly constituency's Lottegollahalli polling station on May 14 due to failure of an EVM.

Meanwhile, BJP president Amit Shah asserted the party would form the next government in Karnataka.

The fiercely contested Karnataka Assembly elections seemed to have brought dividend to BJP's gamble to bank on aging Lingayat face B S Yeddyurappa - notwithstanding the old corruption charges against him as most exit polls for the Karnataka show the BJP making huge gains.

The fate of almost 2,644 candidates in 222 of 224 assembly constituencies was sealed in Saturday's polls that passed off peacefully amid tight security.

On Twitter, the chief minister dubbed the exit polls as entertainment for the next two days.

Congress leader and Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah also dismissed the exit polls. Relying on a poll of polls is like a person who can't swim crossing a river on foot relying on a statistician who told him the average depth of the river is 4 feet.

Karnataka has an electorate of over 4.97 crores, including 2.52 crore men and 2.45 crore women. "At 6 feet you drown (sic)".

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