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High-voltage Karnataka battle ends, millions vote

IANS  |  Bengaluru 

A high-stake battle for the Assembly ended on Saturday evening, with over 35 million voting in an election crucial for the ruling as well as the BJP and the JD-S.

Minister said he was "very very confident" that the would retain power in the only major southern state it now rules even as officials said about 70 per cent of the over 5.06 crore electorate had voted till 6 p.m.

Voting was peaceful by and large barring a few incidents of some non-functional EVMs, missing voter names and procedural delays, an official told IANS.

All three main contenders for power -- Congress, the (BJP) and the the Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) -- claimed they would win hands down.

Voting in Chikkaballapur and Ramanagara districts witnessed a record 76 per cent polling, while the average polling across Bengaluru was 48 per cent till 5.30 p.m.

The BJP's face B.S. Yeddyurappa was among the first to vote at Shikaripura in district. He has claimed that the BJP will secure 140-150 seats and that he will invite to his swearing in.

ridiculed him after voting on Saturday, saying the was "mentally disturbed" and that the was sure of bagging more than 120 seats.

and former H.D. Deve Gowda, his wife and second son cast their votes in their hometown Holenarsipura in district.

"We expect a possibility of forming the government as we have done well to get a majority," Deve Gowda told reporters.

Polling in Bengaluru's segment has been postponed to May 28 following the discovery of voter ID cards and cancelled in the city's Jayanagar seat following the death of BJP contestant B.

In all, voting was conducted in 26 of the 28 constituencies in the city.

has over 5.06 crore electorate, including 2.6 crore men and 2.5 crore women. A total of 15.42 lakh voters, aged 18-19, have registered for the first time.

The highest number of voters (6.03 lakh) are in Bengaluru South and the lowest (1.7 lakh) at Sringeri in district.

Polling was held in 58,008 stations in 30 districts, with 600 of them dubbed 'pink booths', overseen by women personnel. Over 1.5 lakh security personnel were deployed.

The vote count will take place on May 15.

In all, 2,654 candidates are in the fray, including 219 women. A total of 222 are from the Congress and BJP each, 201 from JD-S, 1,155 Independents and 800 from other national, regional and fringe parties. About 450 contestants are in the battle from Bengaluru.

is contesting from Chamundeshwari at and Badami in district.

BJP's member from Ballari B.R. Sriramaulu, contesting from two seats including Badami and Molakamuru (reserved) seat in district, on Saturday worshipped a cow and visited temples before voting.

JD-S state and former is in the fray from Ramanagara and Channapatna seats in the old region. Yeddyurappa is contesting from Shikaripura in district in Malnad region.

Siddaramaiah has fielded his son from his hometown Varuna in district.

--IANS

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(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sat, May 12 2018. 19:52 IST
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