Bengaluru: Congress wins more seats in Karnataka local bodies polls

Bengaluru, Feb 23 (IANS) The ruling Congress on Tuesday won more seats in elections to Karnataka’s local bodies spanning zila panchayats (ZPs) and taluk panchayats (TPs), leaving the opposition BJP and the Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) behind.

“Of the total 1,083 ZP seats, the Congress won 498 (45 percent), followed by the BJP with 408, JD-S with 148, independents with 27 and one each by the Janata Dal-United and the CPI-M,” state Election Commissioner P.N. Srinivasachari told reporters here after votes were counted in all the 30 districts across the state.

In the TP polls, of the 3,884 seats across the state, the Congress secured a whopping 1,705 seats (44 percent), followed by the BJP with 1,362, the JD-S 610, the CPI-M 179, the Karnataka Janata Party 9, the JD-U 8, the CPI 6, the BSP 5 and others 8. No independent won a TP seat.

Polling was held in two phases across the state — 15 districts each on February 13 and February 20 — peacefully barring stray incidents.

The ruling Congress bagged more ZP seats in 15 districts, the BJP in 13 districts and the JD-S in 2 districts (Hassan and Mandya).

Though reduced to a regional party with large presence in the state, the JD-S, led by former prime minister H.D. Deve Gowda, drew blank in 10 districts.

As a main opposition party, the BJP drew blank in two districts — Ramanagara and Mandya districts.

Breaching the Congress bastion, the BJP got more seats in Kalaburgi and Raichur districts in the state’s erstwhile Hyderabad-Karnataka region.

The Congress, however, surprised the BJP in Belagavi, winning 43 out of 90 seats, while the latter got 39 seats.

In Taluk Panchayats (TPs) too, the Congress won more seats in 14 districts, followed by the BJP in 12 districts and the JD-S in four districts.

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