- It’s a given fact that Indian citizens will be expecting one or the other election in the country right through the year. Be it the state assembly election, Rajya Sabha election, bypolls to Parliamentary or assemblies, or for that matter local urban bodies – including the panchayat, there would be one or the other elections happening around the year. No sooner than one election concludes, the Election Commission of India will have to make preparations for the other to ensure fair and free elections. Recently we had assembly elections in Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh. The next two months will witness assembly elections in three Northeastern states. But all eyes will be on the big election coming up in Karnataka in May 2023.
PC: Ritu Sharma , Sohini Ghosh , Parimal A Dabhi
- Karnataka is not only considered one of the most advanced states in terms of revenue generation but also in other economic parameters too. Not for nothing Bengaluru is anointed as the silicon valley of India as the country’s 70% of information technology revenue is generated here. Thus, every political party, whether at the regional or national level, would fervently wish to make its presence felt since a lot is at stake here. So who are the major players in Karnataka itching to assume power after emerging triumphant at the hustings? Three major political parties in the fray are the Congress, the Bharatiya Janata Party, and the Janata Dal (Secular). All of them are decades old having held the reins of power at different times.
- Of course, the Grand Old Party ruled the state for several years till the saffron brigade started making its presence felt forcefully in the last two decades or so. In the interim, the regional party of ex-Prime Minister Deve Gowda’s JD(S) too had an opportunity to serve the people not with a majority on its own but with the support of Congress and BJP on a few occasions. Thus, the fight is directly between the two national parties viz. Congress and BJP with JD(S) expected to play a decent enough role in its bastion of the old Mysore region. None of the incumbent parties have returned to power in the last few elections. Interestingly, neither of the two national parties could garner a majority of seats on its own as well. Yes, JD(S) did play the role of kingmaker a few times.
PC:Amrita Madhukalya, DHNS
- Yes, JD(S) under the leadership of HD Kumaraswamy formed the government with the support of the Congress and BJP on two occasions. It’s another story altogether that the coalition government fell through without completing the terms. Mind you, caste equations always essay a prominent role in Indian elections and the Karnataka election is no exception. As such BJP will bank on upper castes and Lingayats, Congress will bank on Dalits and Muslims along with a faction of OBCs, and JD(S) will look up to Vokkaligas. Of the three prominent parties in the fray, Congress looks to have an advantage vis-à-vis BJP since the latter has been mired in corruption charges and lack of development works. Cannot expect a majority for any party though. Yes, JD(S) will be crucial.