BJP Takes Initial Lead in RR Nagar, Sirsa Assembly Seats as Counting Begins

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Karnataka By-election LIVE Updates: The BJP has taken an initial lead in both RR Nagar (Rajarajeshwarinagar) and Sira as counting begins in the assembly seats with postal ballots. It’s a three-cornered fight between BJP, Congress and JD-S in the assembly bypolls as well as four Council segments. The assembly byolls were held on November 3, while Council elections were held on October 28. The RR Nagar assembly seat falls in southwest Bengaluru, while the Sira assembly seat is in Tumkur district.

Here are the Karnataka By-election LIVE Updates:

– BJP candidates N Muniratna and Rajesh Gowda are leading respectively in RR Nagar and Sira assembly seats as counting of votes begins with postal ballots.

– The Sira assembly bypoll was necessitated by the death of sitting Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) legislator B Satyanarayana at a private hospital on August 5 after prolonged illness. The JD-S fielded Satyanarayana’s widow Ammajamma as its candidate, while Rajesh Gowda is the ruling BJP’s nominee in the triangular contest.

– Congress candidate in Sira Assembly by-election TB Jayachandra and his wife GH Nirmala have tested Covid positive but are asymptomatic right now. “Jayachandra and Nirmala, who tested positive for coronavirus, have been admitted to a private hospital in the city,” Congress state unit spokesman Ravi Gowda said on Monday. TB Jayachandra, 71, is a former state minister.

– The RR Nagar assembly by-election was necessitated by the resignation of N Muniratna in July 2019, who is the BJP’s candidate after he defected from the Congress in November 2019. The Congress fielded a greenhorn H Kusuma, widow of former IAS officer DK Ravi, and JD-U fielded V Krishna Murthy.

– As the RR Nagar constituency has a large number of Vokkaligas, a politically dominant community in the state, the Congress and JD-S candidates are Vokkaligas, while Muniratna is a Naidu.

– A record 82.31 percent voting was registered in Sira, while it was only 45.24 percent in RR Nagar. Around 6.76-lakh voters were eligible to vote in the twin by-elections. In RR Nagar, only 45.24 per cent of the 4.6-lakh voters exercised their franchise, while in Sira, a whopping 82.31 per cent of the 2.15-lakh voters cast their ballot.

– Biennial elections for four Council seats were also held on October 28 in the Karnataka West Graduates, Karnataka North-East Teachers, Bangalore Teachers and Karnataka South-East Graduates constituencies. In West Graduates, 70.11 percent voting was recorded, followed by 75 percent in South-East Graduates, 73.32 percent in North-East Teachers and 66 percent in Bangalore Teachers.

– In the Council biennial elections, 40 candidates from the BJP, Congress, JD-S and independents were in the fray for the four seats. Of the retired candidates, R Chowda Reddy Thoopalli of the JD-S re-contested from South-East Graduates, SV Sankanur of BJP from West Graduates, Sharanappa Mattur of Congress from North-East Teachers and Puttanna of BJP from Bangalore Teachers constituencies.

– In South-East Graduates, 15 contested, including Chidanand Gowda of BJP and Ramesh Babu of Congress. Two BJP rebels – ADT Srinivasa and Haraluru Lepakshi were also in the fray as independents in South-East Graduates. In West Graduates, 11 were in fray, including RM Kuberappa (Congress) and KS Channappa (JD-S). The JD-S, however, has disowned Chennappa and is backing independent Basavaraj Gurikar in West Graduates contest.

– In North-East Teachers, five contested, including Timmayya Purle (JD-S), Shashil Namoshi (BJP) and Vatal Nagaraj, president of the regional outfit Kannada Chaluvali Vatal Paksha.ANamoshi had won from the seat twice earlier. In Bangalore Teachers, nine were in fray, including R Praveen Peter (Congress) and AP Ranganath (JD-S). In all, 2,34,718 voters were eligible to exercise their franchise in 549 polling booths across the 4 constituencies.

– Of the 75 seats in the Council, 25 are elected from the assembly, 25 from local bodies across the state, 7 each from Graduates and Teachers constituencies and 11 are nominated by the state governor on the recommendation of the chief minister or the state cabinet. In the 75-member Council, the BJP has 28 seats, Congress 27, JD-S 14, 1 independent and 1 chairman, while 4 are vacant.

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