QBengaluru: Assembly Polls on 12 May; Siddaramaiah Creates Record
1. Karnataka Assembly Polls to be Held on 12 May, Counting on 15 May
The Karnataka Assembly polls will be held on 12 May and the votes will be counted on 15 May, Chief Election Commissioner OP Rawat announced at a press conference on 27 March. There will be a single phase election for the 224-member assembly, like the last time.
The notification for the polls will be issued on 17 April and the last date for filing of nomination will be 24 April, Rawat said.
More than 4 crore voters are set to partake in the elections. Rawat said that the ballot will have photos of the candidates attached to it. There will be 52,696 polling stations in operation, including 450 that will be completely manned by women. All electronic voting machines will be linked to Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) machines, he added.
2. After 40 Years, a CM to Serve a Full 5-Year Term in Karnataka
Even before Karnataka goes to polls, Siddaramaiah has already entered the history books. Siddaramaiah will finish a full 5-year term before the elections are conducted, making him the second Chief Minister of the state to achieve this landmark. And this is happening after a long gap of 40 years.
Siddaramaiah was sworn in as chief minister on 13 May 2013 and will continue to hold the post until the elections. In the history of Karnataka, except for Siddaramaiah and Devaraj Urs, no other Karnataka CM has served a full term. In case of other governments, they were either dissolved earlier or had multiple chief ministers.
3. One-way Toll Collection on Kempegowda International Airport Road put on Hold
The move by the National Highway Authority of India to start collecting toll from Tuesday at Sadahalli plaza from vehicles heading to the Kempegowda International Airport has been put off.
The Navayuga Devanahalli Toll Plaza (NDTPL), which operates the booth, had planned to start collecting the toll from Monday midnight.
An official from the NDTPL said the move has been delayed as the required number of police personnel was not deployed for security and protection of their personnel at the booth. The introduction of toll fee collection at Sadahalli plaza a few years ago had witnessed large-scale violence with road users attacking NDTPL personnel.
4. Gowda Says No Time Left for Pre-Poll Alliances
Janata Dal (Secular) supremo H D Deve Gowda on Tuesday ruled out having pre-poll alliance with the Congress or any secular parties, citing time constraint.
Speaking to reporters in Bengaluru, Gowda said that earlier in the day, members of the Samvidhana Rakshanegagi Karnataka had met him and urged him to forge an alliance with the Congress to ensure the "communal" BJP's defeat in the elections. "But where is the time to do this? They have said that the BJP should be defeated in the elections," he said.
Gowda also said that his conversation with the members of the organisation had been misinterpreted by the media.
5. Amit Shah Gaffe Embarrasses BS Yeddyurappa, Shocks Party
After his gaffe of calling Vidwat, the private individual who was brutally attacked allegedly by Congress MLA N A Haris son Mohammad Nalpad , a BJP man and then later retracting his remarks, BJP national president Amit Shah embarrassed his state president B S Yeddyurappa with this slip of the tongue by saying his was the most corrupt government ever.
While rattling allegations against the Siddaramaiah government, Shah inadvertently said: “Recently a retired Supreme Court judge said if there was ever a competition of the most corrupt government then the Yeddyurappa government is number one...” shocking Yeddyurappa and the BJP leadership.
6. BBMP Starts Removing Political Boards, Banners
The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) started removing flex boards and banners of all political parties on Tuesday shortly after the dates for the Karnataka Assembly elections were announced.
BBMP Commissioner and District Election Officer N Manjunath Prasad promised to remove all flex boards and banners within 24 hours, regardless of which political party had put them up.
Even government advertisements on BMTC buses, public hoardings and bus shelters were taken down.
"We have also asked the Department of Information and Public Relations (DIPR) to stop playing political advertisements on radio. Photographs of politicians on all government websites such as the BBMP, the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) and the Bangalore Electricity Supply Company (Bescom) will also be removed," said Prasad.