Voters spotted at centers and staff busy coordinating ballots
On Wednesday as voting for the 224-member Karnataka Assembly begins, large queues were witnessed outside polling centers across the state indicating a huge voter turnout in the closely-fought contest.
People started lining up outside the centers well before polling began at 7 a.m. and will end at 6 p.m.
The centers were abuzz with voters and staff were seen busy in coordinating the balloting process. People from all walks of life have come out of their homes to exercise their franchise.
Brisk voting was underway in the Hubbali-Dharwad constituency, where former Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar is fighting a tough battle against BJP leader Mahesh Tenginkai in the Assembly polls. Dharwad district also reported heavy polling in the initial stages.
In Karnataka, the ruling BJP is contesting all the 224 seats, while its principal opposition, Congress is fighting in 223 seats and extending support to Darshan Puttaniah of the Karnataka Sarvodaya party in Melukotta Assembly constituency in Old Mysuru.
Meanwhile, top political leaders of the state have also voted along with their family members.
Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai, who is contesting from the Shiggaon constituency in the Haveri district, offered prayers with his family at Anjaneya (Hanuman) temple in Ashok Nagar before casting his vote. Party National President J P Nadda has indicated that Bommai would be the CM if BJP is voted to power.
Minister for Higher Education, IT, and BT Dr. C N Ashwath Narayan voted in Malleshwaram with his family members.
Minister for Health Dr. K Sudhakar exercised his franchise at Chikkaballapur. He came to the polling station with his father and wife.
Home Minister Araga Jnanendra arrived with his wife and daughter and cast his vote in Thirthahalli of Shivamogga district.
Minister for Muzrai, Hajj, and Wakf Shashikala Jolle and her husband MP from Chikkodi parliamentary seat Annasaheb Jolle have cast their votes at the Yaksamba town in Belagavi district. Their daughter Priya Jolle and son Basavaprasada Jolle also exercised their franchise.
The BJP is fighting a tough battle against the Congress in this Assembly election. Congress had an edge during the initial phases of the polls but after the front-line leaders like Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Amit Shah stepped in the campaigning, the equation seemed to be changing.
[With Inputs from IANS]
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Let the games begin !! Fate to be sealed !! Fate unlocking after 3 days. Dharma to be elected to rule