The announcement of the dates for the assembly elections in Karnataka at once removes the political uncertainty in the air and reopens the evergreen question: who will win this time round? Will it be a decisive verdict this time unlike in 2004, or is it going to be a fractured verdict once again, as predicted by H.D. Deve Gowda? Does the BJP have the strength and stamina to not only retain its tally of 79 but add significantly to it, to come to power on its own? Or, will the Congress, kicking and screaming, once again find itself having to share the spoils with the Janata Dal (Secular)?
What are the three key issues on which this election will be decided? Is inflation and price rise likely to play a role? Will voters remember the “worst-ever betrayal” of the BJP by the JDS? Will the fact that the assembly polls are being held separately from the Lok Sabha elections change situation? Will S.M. Krishna‘s return to active politics along with the good rains help the Congress? Will the farm loan writeoff in the Union budget, along with the Congress’ promises of rice at Rs 2 a kilogram and colour TVs play a role? Will Arun Jaitely be able to replay his Gujarat magic for B.S. Yediyurappa? Will the BSP play spoilsport?
What is the final tally likely to be?
Read what you said in November: CHURUMURI POLL: Who will win the next election?