Though the exit polls do not spell good for the Janata Dal (Secular), the party is confident of getting more seats than what has been projected.

The party, which was hopeful of playing the role of “kingmaker” in the case of a hung Assembly a few days ago, refuses to accept that they will get only 40-plus seats.

Relaxing for a day after polling, JD(S) supremo H.D. Deve Gowda and State president H.D. Kumaraswamy are now engaged in discussions with candidates on whom they pin their hopes.

Sources in the JD(S) disclosed that second-line leaders such as Basanagouda Patil Yatnal, M.C. Nanaiah, Bandeppa Kashampur, N. Chaluvarayaswamy and P.G.R. Sindhia are reaching Bangalore on Tuesday night to hold discussions on the possible outcome of the polls.

“The party could have secured 40-plus seats, with Mr. Kumaraswamy sitting in Bangalore. What was the need for Mr. Gowda and Mr. Kumaraswamy to tour 224 constituencies? The projections have no scientific basis. We will cross the 65 mark at least,” argued a senior party leader.

“We have not lost our confidence of getting ‘reasonable’ number of seats, considering the efforts invested by Mr. Kumaraswamy and Mr. Gowda,” he said.

Increase in poll percentage would be definitely beneficial to the party, he added.

Mr. Kumaraswamy told The Hindu he is confident of securing at least 25 seats in north Karnataka alone.

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