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Almost 25% of Karnataka’s seats have stuck to the same party since 2008 but Eight CMs Changed since 2008!

Voters of 58 of Karnataka’s seats chose the same party in 2008, 2013 and 2018. Of these, 25 seats are with Congress, 23 with BJP Half of the seats in Bengaluru locked

Bengaluru, which has a significant presence of Vokkaligas, falls in south Karnataka. But it’s treated as a separate division for its political character.Home to 1.3 crore people, Bengaluru is politically crucial as it sends 28 MLAs to the Karnataka assembly. The BJP has been on a winning streak in 9 seats over the last three elections. The Congress is not far behind with 7, indicating how the two national parties are firmly entrenched in their strongholds.
Out of the 28 seats here, BJP won 11 in 2018 and the Congress, 13. Two went to the JD(S), while two seats did not go to polls at the time

Former state Congress president Dinesh Gundu Rao, former Congress minister M. Krishnappa, BJP minister C.N. Ashwathnarayan and former BJP minister S. Suresh Kumar are among the MLAs who have won three consecutive terms from Bengaluru.
BJP dominance in coastal areas & Kittur-Karnataka While the BJP won 30 seats in Kittur-Karnataka in the 2018 election, it won 16 in coastal Karnataka. Both Kittur-Karnataka and coastal regions are considered BJP strongholds for different reasons.

Comprising Udupi, Dakshina Kannada and Uttara Kannada districts, coastal Karnataka is often called the “BJP’s Hindutva lab”. It was only in 2013 that the Congress managed to outperform the BJP in the region as the latter’s votes got split following B.S. Yediyurappa’s rebellion.

Of the 19 seats here, the BJP has retained only Sullia and Sirsi since 2008, while the Congress can boast of only one such seat — Mangaluru.
In Lingayat-dominated Kittur-Karnataka region, which accounts for 50 seats, 6 seats — Raybag, Saundatti Yellamma, Shiggaon, Mudhol, Hubli-Dharwad-West, Hubli-Dharwad-Central — have been with the BJP since 2008.

Congress dominance in Kalyana-Karnataka
Kalyana-Karnataka has a mix of backward classes, Kurubas, Lingayats and minorities in its 41 seats. Out of the overall 25 seats that the Congress has won continuously since 2008 in Karnataka, six are in this region. The BJP has only two such seats (Aurad and Gulbarga Dakshin) here. Considered a Congress stronghold, the party won 20 seats from the region in 2018.

In the 13 seats spread across the districts of Davangere and Chitradurga in central Karnataka, the BJP won 10 in the previous election. Voters in none of these seats voted continuously for the BJP in the last three elections.The Congress has one such seat — Davangere South — where 91-year old five-time MLA Shamanur Shivashankarappa was renominated in 2018.

Candidate change

Of the 25 seats continuously with the Congress since 2008, 18 were won by the same candidates. This year, the Congress is set to repeat all MLAs in all these seats barring Gokak, where it has fielded Mahantesh Kadadi, and Shivajinagar, where the candidate is Rizwan Arshad.

Shivashankarappa (Davangere South), Karnataka Congress chief D.K. Shivakumar (Kanakapura), party working president Eshwara Khandre (Bhalki), former state Congress chief Dinesh Gundu Rao (Gandhinagar) belong to the group of legislators with at least three consecutive wins from the same seats.

Another such candidate is former Congressman Ramesh Jarkiholi, who, however, is with the BJP now. The Gokak MLA essayed a major role in the rebellion in 2019 that led to the collapse of the Congress-JD(S) government.

In the remaining 7 seats as well, where the party has won despite different candidates, all Congress MLAs have got poll tickets barring the high-profile constituency of Varuna.
Former chief minister Siddaramaiah is contesting from this constituency, which was won by his son Yathindra in 2018. The Congress stalwart, who won in 2008 and 2013 from Varuna, is locking horns with the BJP’s V. Somanna.

Additionally, the three seats of Afzalpur, Bangarapet and Doddaballapur were retained by the Congress even after the sitting MLAs defected to the BJP at different points prior to the 2018 assembly election.

In the BJP camp, CM Basavaraj Bommai (Shiggaon), C.T. Ravi (Chikmagalur), B.S. Yediyurappa (Shikaripura), C.N. Ashwathnarayan (Malleswaram), Anand Singh (Vijayanagar), and R. Ashoka (Padmanabhanagar) are among those candidates who have three or more terms as MLAs from the same constituency.

Yediyurappa, however, won in 2013 on the ticket of the Karnataka Janata Paksha (KJP). The former chief minister formed the KJP in 2012 after he broke away from the BJP, but merged it again with the national party in 2014.

In 2013, when the BJP’s tally nosedived to 40 seats, the KJP spoilt the national party’s prospects in at least 29 constituencies.As many as 21 out of 23 BJP strongholds relied on the same candidate during the state polls in 2008, 2013 and 2018. The two exceptions were Hubli-Dharwad-West and Gulbarga Dakshin, where Arvind Bellad and Dattatraya Patil Revoor had taken the mantle from their fathers in the 2013 election.

This year, 5 of the 23 seats will not feature incumbents for one reason or the other. While Arvind Bellad is fighting from Hubli-Dharwad-East, and Jayanagar’s B.N. Vijay Kumar passed away, Jagadish Shettar (Hubli-Dharwad-Central) and S. Angara (Sullia) were dropped from the BJP list. Yediyurappa, meanwhile, stepped aside for his son B.Y. Vijayendra in Shikaripura.

As for the JD(S), the regional party has won all 10 stronghold seats in southern Karnataka, which includes Old Mysuru.Seven seats — Arsikere, Gubbi, Holenarasipur, Krishnarajanagara, Magadi, Sakleshpur, Shravanabelagola — have had the same candidates over the last three elections. JD(S) leader H.K. Kumaraswamy (Sakleshpur) and H.D. Revanna (Holenarasipur) are among these candidates.

The other three seats of Ramanagaram, Maddur and Shrirangapattana were retained by the JD(S) despite fielding different candidates.Former CM H.D. Kumaraswamy had won Ramanagaram thrice but he vacated it after the 2018 election results as he decided to retain Channapatna. His wife Anitha won the Ramanagaram bypoll by over 1 lakh votes.
After the death of MLA M.S. Siddaraju in 2008, the JD(S) retained Maddur — Siddaraju’s wife and D.C. Thammanna won the 2013 and 2018 state elections, respectively. Thammanna will be looking to score a hat trick of wins when the election result is out on 13 May.

In Srirangapatna, A.B. Ramesha Bandisiddegowda turned to the Congress after winning the 2008 and 2013 elections, but Ravindra Srikantaiah of the JD(S) trounced him in 2018. Both are locking horns again this year.

Three incumbent MLAs in these 10 seats are not fighting elections on the JD(S) ticket this time. Gubbi MLA S.R. Srinivas and Arsikere MLA K.M. Shivalinge Gowda, who won multiple terms on JD(S) tickets, are Congress candidates.

In Ramanagaram, after Deve Gowda, his son Kumaraswamy and his daughter-in-law Anitha, the JD(S) patriarch’s grandson Nikhil Kumaraswamy is vying to represent the constituency in the Karnataka assembly.

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