The Election Commission of India (EC) on Tuesday announced that the Karnataka Assembly elections will be held on May 12, 2018, and the counting of votes will be conducted three days later on May 15. While making the announcement, Election Commissioner Om Prakash Rawat said that 56,000 polling stations will be set up to carry out the elections across 224 constituencies. Also, the model code of conduct will come into effect immediately.
The magnitude of upcoming elections in the state of Karnataka is huge because it is one of the few states left which are ruled by Congress and given its crucial geographical location, it is thought to be the gateway to the rest of southern states. Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is leaving no stone unturned to usurp Siddaramaiah-led government and assume power from the next term while Congress is trying their fair share to retain power in the state.
The rampant juggernaut of BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi has almost wiped out Congress from the country as the saffron party is ruling in as much as 21 states. BJP’s most recent success came in northeastern states of Nagaland, Meghalaya and most notably in Tripura, where it ended the 25-year rule of Communist Party of India (M). On another hand, Rahul Gandhi-led Congress has been reduced to bare bones as they find themselves in power in just four states – Punjab, Karnataka, Meghalaya and Mizoram.
During Karnataka Assembly elections 2013, five major political parties contested the elections for 223 constituencies as the election for one of the constituency was postponed. Congress secured 122 seats, 9 more than the majority mark of 113, while Janata Dal (Secular) and BJP won 40 seats each. On May 8, 2013, Siddaramaiah assumed the chair of Chief Minister from his predecessor and BJP leader Jagadish Shettar.>