The Assembly election results’ trends in Karnataka are indicating a decisive victory for the Congress party with wins in 136 seats out of the 224 in the contest. A closer look at whether there was a rural-urban skew in the performance reveals that India’s grand old party registered its strongest performance in rural and semi-rural constituencies, even as its vote shares increased across all regions (urban and semi-urban ones as well) as compared to the 2018 Assembly elections.
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The Congress’ overall vote share according to the latest trends is 43%, with the shares going up to 44% in semi-rural and rural constituencies compared to the BJP’s 28.5% and 36.8% shares. It was a different story in urban constituencies. The Congress registered a 45.4% share in urban seats, relatively higher than Congress’ share. The BJP’s vote share dipped to 36.2% in semi-urban seats.
Table 1: The table shows the vote share secured in the 2023 elections and the change from the 2018 polls across rural-urban categories
In sum, the Congress won in a whopping 92 of the 143 seats in rural and semi-rural areas, a significant 62 seats higher than the BJP’s 30. The JD(S) which prides itself as a party committed to agrarian issues and has traditionally dominated in Vokkaliga strongholds, maintained its seat tally (8 wins) in the rural seats but lost significantly in semi-rural constituencies (9 seats won in 2023, a drop of 8 seats) compared to the 2018 results.
Table 2: The table shows the number of seats led in the 2023 elections and the change from the 2018 polls across rural-urban categories
In urban seats, the Congress’s tally did not decrease while it increased its tally by 11 seats in semi-urban constituencies compared to the 2018 elections. The BJP enhanced its urban tally by 2 seats while dropping behind in 4 seats among semi-urban constituencies compared to the 2018 elections.
It can be safely said that the rural areas of Karnataka returned in favour of the Congress in a big way.