The Congress' victory in the Karnataka Assembly election stemmed from gains in five of the state's six regions, including the coast, which has been a stronghold of the incumbent Bharatiya Janata Party.
In the Old Mysuru region, where the landed Vokkaligas dominate, the Congress more than doubled its tally to 39 out of 61 seats, compared with 19 in the previous elections. Perhaps the most striking feature of the change was the party's wins in the two seats in Kodagu district, where it won for the first time since 2004. There had been vocal opposition in this district to former chief minister Siddaramaiah's move to celebrate the birth anniversary of Tipu Sultan.
Both of the Congress' principal chief ministerial aspirants, Siddaramaiah and DK Shivakumar, hail from this region. Siddaramaiah won in Varuna in the Mysuru district, while Shivakumar beat Revenue Minister R Ashok in the Kanakapura seat.
Another big win for the Congress was the defeat of Janata Dal (Secular) 's Nikhil Kumaraswamy, the son of former chief minister HD Kumaraswamy. In fact, in the Vokkaliga heartland of Mandya, the Congress won 6 of the seven seats.
The JD(S), which won 30 of the seats in the region in 2018, was reduced to just 16 seats, and the BJP won just six seats in a region where it was looking to make massive gains.
In the coastal region, too, the Congress managed to pull some upsets, including the defeat of Assembly speaker Vishveshwar Hegde Kageri in the Sirsi seat in Uttara Kannada district. Though the BJP was the major winner in the region, which has 19 seats, its tally reduced to 12 from 16, whereas the Congress increased its numbers from three to six, and the JD(S) won one seat.
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Of Central Karnataka's 26 seats, the Congress made a huge gain of 18, compared with five in 2018, whereas the BJP was reduced to six from 21 in 2018. The JD(S) and one Independent won a seat each in 2023.
Though the BJP retained the Shikaripura seat in the region, where former chief minister BS Yediyurappa's son BY Vijayendra was contesting, its senior leader CT Ravi suffered a shock defeat in his stronghold of Chikkamagaluru.
In the northern Kittur Karnataka, which has 50 seats and where Lingayats dominate, the Congress nearly doubled its tally to 33 from 17 seats earlier. In the region, known as a BJP stronghold, the party's tally nearly halved to 16 from 30 in 2018. In Haveri district, where Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai was contesting in the Shiggaon seat, the BJP could retain only his seat. It had won four in the previous election. The Congress won five seats this time, up from one in 2018.
It was in this region that two senior BJP leaders had switched over to the Congress ahead of the polls after the party denied them tickets. While former deputy chief minister Laxman Savadi won the Athani seat in the Belagavi district, former chief minister Jagadish Shettar could not beat the BJP candidate.
The Congress increased its tally in the northeastern Kalyana Karnataka region, which accounts for 40 Assembly seats, from 21 in 2018 to 25, whereas the BJP's tally fell from 15 in 2018 to 11.
Notably, mining baron Gali Janardhan Reddy, who launched his own party, Kalyana Rajya Pragathi Paksha (KRPP), won the Gangawati seat in the Koppal district. However, he ensured the defeat of his brother G Somasekhara Reddy, of the BJP, in the Ballari City constituency, who finished third behind the Congress and second-placed KRPP candidate. The third Reddy brother, G Karunakara Reddy, also a BJP candidate, lost to an Independent in the Harapanahalli seat.
The BJP appeared to have been steady in Bengaluru city, which has 28 seats. Though it won 11 seats in the 2018 polls, its tally rose to 16 a year later thanks to defectors from the Congress and JD(S). In the city, it won 15 seats this time, whereas the Congress won 13.