Congress is expected to win an outright majority in Karnataka’s 224 assembly constituencies after votes are counted. The BJP is lagging with under 80 seats.

The country’s political circles are already speculating on the causes behind BJP’s state defeat.

Face weakness

The BJP lost Karnataka because of a lack of a strong political leader. BJP CM Basavaraj Bommai succeeded Yediyurappa.

Basavaraj Bommai failed to bring development and progress to the people. DK Shivakumar and Siddaramaiah head the Congress, severely handicapping the BJP.

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Prominent leaders were marginalized.

This election marginalized former Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa, who built the BJP. The BJP also refused Jagadish Shettar and Laxman Savadi tickets. Before fighting, both leaders joined Congress.

BS Yediyurappa, Jagadish Shettar, and Laxman Savadi are Lingayat leaders. The party suffered by relegating these leaders.

Disappointed Lingayats

BJP campaigned to win support from Karnataka’s dominating groups. It lost Lingayat, Dalit, Adivasi, OBC, and Vokkalinga votes.

The Congress has also won Lingayat votes and kept Muslims, Dalits, and OBCs loyal.

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Polarization backfired.

After Congress committed to prohibiting the Bajrang Dal, Karnataka BJP leaders raised Halala, Hijab, Azaan, and Lord Hanuman throughout the year.

Most of these problems had communal undertones, but they did not help BJP in Karnataka, while they may have helped elsewhere. Karnataka rejected BJP’s Hindutva card, which worked elsewhere.

Corruption claims

The Congress’s ’40 percent government label, used against the BJP from the start to emphasize its corruption, took on and became popular.

BJP leader KS Eshwarappa’s departure as a minister in April last year over corruption charges fueled the flames. The State Contractors Association complained to the PM. BJP’s state win may have been affected by this.

Anti-incumbency wave

The BJP’s loss in Karnataka was due to its failure to overcome the anti-incumbency tsunami. Karnataka voters resented BJP for failing to deliver on its promises.