In the run up to the biggest election of 2018, TNM brings you Poll Watch every Monday and Thursday.

Poll Watch A wrap of all the politicking and campaigning this week in Karnataka
news Karnataka 2018 Thursday, March 01, 2018 - 17:36

Assembly polls in Karnataka are just months away, and the current Siddaramaiah-led Congress government in the state will finish its full term of five years on May 28 – a feat no party has managed since 1985. But will the Congress manage to fight anti-incumbency in the one of the few states it governs in India following the Modi wave? Will the Yeddyurappa-led BJP pull off a win in the state under Amit Shah’s watchful eye? And will HD Kumaraswamy’s JD(S) get to a position where they can play kingmaker in Karnataka once again?

In the run up to the biggest election of 2018, TNM brings you Poll Watch every Monday and Thursday. It will be your one stop shop for all the updates on the campaigns, manifestos, and politicking ahead of the 2018 Karnataka Assembly elections.

Here are this week’s updates:

  • AICC President Rahul Gandhi was on his third pre-election tour in Karnataka, this time to woo voters in Belagavi, Bijapur, Bagalakote and Dharwad. The party claims that there is overwhelming support for the current government and it will be reelected.
  • Parallel to Rahul Gandhi’s tour, Prime Minister Narendra Modi also addressed a rally in Davangere district. Both national leaders took to quoting 12th century reformer Basavanna to attack each other, as a means of wooing the Lingayat voters.
  • Rahul Gandhi and the state Congress leaders have been consistently attacking BJP’s CM candidate BS Yeddyurappa on the illegal mining scam, which cost him his Chief Ministership in 2011.
  • By conveniently disregarding Yeddyurappa, the Congress has been successful in creating a Siddaramaiah v/s Modi narrative which has sidelined Yeddyurappa’s importance in the campaign.
  • BJP National President Amit Shah, who has been touring the coastal belt in the state, has accused the current government of corruption. Harping on to the issue, Modi, too, called it a government of ‘10% Commission’.
  • The battle has also extended into the online space, with CM Siddaramaiah, the state leadership trading charges with PM Modi, Amit Shah and the Karnataka BJP.
  • Although the Congress and the BJP have hogged the headlines in the run up to the elections so far, regional Janata Dal(Secular) President HD Kumaraswamy believes that the visits of Shah, Rahul and Modi to the state were inconsequential.
  • The JD(S), unlike its rivals has already released its first list of candidates. It is the only party to have announced a pre-poll alliance with the BSP and NCP.
  • New entrants are also trying to make a mark in the state elections. The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) which announced that it will be contesting in Karnataka for the first time held a protest in Shantinagar in Bengaluru on Saturday heaping pressure on local MLA NA Haris over the issue of his son Mohammed Nalapad brutally attacking a man at a cafe in Bengaluru on February 19.


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