Exit polls predict hung Assembly in K'taka

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Another poll by India Today TV, released after voting closed on Saturday, predicted 106-118 seats for the Congress party in Karnataka, which is the only place in South India where the BJP has ever managed to win control of the state government.

Outgoing chief minister P.C. Siddaramaiah rubbished Yeddyurappa's claim of winning 150 seats and said the Congress would bag at least 120 seats. Muslims who form almost 13 per cent of the state's population are a crucial vote bank for the non-BJP outfits and many experts predicted that the Congress might have managed to swing the Muslim supporters of the JD (S) in its citadel of Old Mysuru region.

The D-Street is factoring a favourable Karnataka poll outcome on Tuesday, by a split exit poll result could cause a kneejerk reaction. The results will be announced on May 15.

A 70 per cent voter turnout was recorded in the high-stakes Karnataka Assembly polls today, the Election Commission (EC) said.

In the ABP News-C Voter post-polling survey, the BJP was ahead of the Congress. NewsX-CNX predicted 102-110 seats in the BJP's kitty with the Congress emerging victorious on 72-78 seats. In Chigaral village of Shorapur constituency, Yadgir district, four people were injured in a clash between Congress and BJP.

"We expect a possibility of forming the government, we have done well", Gowda told ANI here.

The exit poll of India TV, too, placed the Congress ahead by giving it 97 seats against 87 of the BJP and 35 of the JD (S).

Congress's last jibe Chief Minister Siddaramaiah said he was "very very confident" that the Congress would retain power. Over 2,600 candidates are in the fray, including 219 women.

A week is a long time in politics, they say, and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) seems to have proved this right in Karnataka.

The state police had deployed more than 43,000 personnel and 22,000 home guards across Karnataka.

The count is likely to go up with electors standing in queues to cast their votes beyond the 6 pm deadline for the polling to conclude, the state election office said.

■ 25,178,359: The number of male voters in Karnataka.

A 56-year-old man from Belthangady (Dakshina Kannada) died of a heart attack while at the polling station and one woman from Haveri district tried to immolate herself due to the lack of development, Kumar said. Several first-time voters, aged 18-19, who comprise 15.42 lakh of Karnataka's 5.06 crore electorate, were spotted taking selfies with ink mark on their index finger after coming out of the polling booths. Both the BJP and the Congress ran a spirited campaign in the State with Prime Minister Narendra Modi leading the BJP charge with 21 rallies, while Rahul and Chief Minister Siddaramaiah led the Congress' bid to ensure that it defies anti-incumbency to retain power.