Bengaluru sources added that Minutes after the counting began in the Karnataka election, the early trends showed that it was a neck and neck battle between the Congress and the BJP. It is not known whether the Siddaramaiah-led Congress government will return to power or the BJP will regain the only southern state it has ever ruled, or if it will be a hung house the verdict of the Karnataka assembly election 2018 will be clear in a few hours from now.
Presently votes are being counted for 222 of the 224 assembly seats from 8 am. Meanwhile an aggregate of nine exit polls shows the BJP emerging as the largest party with 97 seats, but well short of the majority mark. As per report the Congress will win 90 seats and regional party Janata Dal Secular or JDS 31, according to the poll of exit polls.
Moreover with the exit polls also predicting that HD Deve Gowda of the Janata Dal Secular will emerge as the kingmaker, there has been a strong buzz of post-poll negotiations even before the counting of votes begins. Presently there is speculation that the JDS chief HD Kumaraswamy is in talks with the Congress and the BJP. Furthermore Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah said while he is willing to stay on as the chief minister for another term, he would step aside for a Dalit candidate if the party high command so desires. Moreover the JDS has said it is the Congress's "responsibility" to reach out if it does not get a majority today.
Cyclone Alert over west-central Bay of Bengal: IMD Accordingly a cyclone alert has been issued for the northern coastal region of the state of Andhra Pradesh with the Indian Meteorological Department predicting 'very heavy to extremely heavy' rains in the region. Meanwhile the IMD has stated that depression has formed over west-central Bay of Bengal which could intensify into a cyclonic storm.
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