Polling is ended in 15 constituencies across Karnataka on Thursday, 5 December, to re-elect their MLAs for the state Assembly. The seats fell vacant after 17 Congress-JD(S) alliance MLAs defected and were disqualified. The polls will determine the fate of the Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa-led BJP government in the state.The results of the polls will be declared on 9 December12 of the 15 seats were held by the Congress-JD(S) coalition earlierThe BJP needs to win at least six seats out of 15 to remain in power in Karnataka We'll get through this! Meanwhile, here's all you need to know about the Coronavirus outbreak to keep yourself safe, informed, and updated. The Quint is now available on Telegram & WhatsApp too, Click here to join.The total strength of the Karnataka Assembly is 225, which means for any political party to form a government, they will require 113 seats in the Assembly. Currently, the BJP has 105 MLAs (including an independent) and in order to hold power, they need to win at least 7 of the 15 seats in the coming by-elections.Meanwhile, the Congress has 66 and the JD(S) has 34 MLAs. There is also one BSP member, a nominated member and the Speaker.During the campaign, the BJP sought votes for "stability", while the Congress and JD(S) urged the electorate to defeat the disqualified legislators responsible for the collapse of their coalition government in July.The 15 constituencies going to the bypolls are spread across three different regions of Karnataka.Seven constituencies – Gokak, Athani, Ranebennur, Kagwad, Yellapur, Vijayanagara, Hirekerur – are in north Karnataka. Six constituencies – Mahalakshmi Layout, Yeshwantpura, KR Puram, Shivajinagar, Hoskote And Chikkabalapur – are in Bengaluru's urban and rural regions. The last two seats – KR Pete and Hunsur – are in Old Mysuru Region.In north Karnataka, the BJP is politically strong, thanks to the Lingayat vote bank they enjoy. In Bengaluru, things are bit different since there are no uniform vote banks for any parties. Voters’ decision is often dependent on the popularity each candidate enjoys in different pockets and among the different demographics of constituency. In the case of old Mysuru region, the JD(S) is confident of winning because it is considered their stronghold.Among the 15 seats going to the bypolls,12 were held by Congress and three by JD(S), whose coalition government collapsed in July after the rebellion by the disqualified MLAs.BJP has fielded 13 of the 16 disqualified legislators as its candidates from their respective constituencies from where they had won in the 2018 assembly elections on Congress and JD(S) tickets.Voting underway at a polling station for bypoll to Gokak Assembly Constituency.The Congress had earlier planned a campaign around the flood crisis that ravaged Belagavi district this year, but dropped the plan once the BJP fielded Ramesh Jarkiholi, a disqualified MLA, from here. His chances of getting the post of deputy CM will help him garner support, with CM Yediyurappa having acknowledged his role in toppling the previous government.Karnataka police have deployed as many as 11,241 personnel from state police and 2,511 Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF). Around 884 polling stations have been marked critical and 414 stations will be manned by CAPF.In Bengaluru city alone, 2,896 policemen have been deployed for election security. This also includes seven deputy commissioners of police and 14 assistant commissioners.This Muslim-dominated constituency will see a fight between 3 Muslim candidates and one SC candidate fielded the BJP. Former MLA Roshan Baig was not given a ticket from the BJP but still exerts influence over voters.According to the election commission, at 9am 6.06% voter turnout was reported in in the 15 constituencies. While the highest voter turnout was reported in Hoskote, Shivajinagar in Bengaluru recorded the lowest turnout so far.EVM malfunctions reported at booth number 99 in Athani constituency and booth number 49 in Bhuvanahalli, Hoskote constituency. The machines were replaced by the election officials.R Vasanth Kumar, Corporator, who defected to BJP from Congress two days ago, rejoined Congress. In a press conference announcing his return to the party, Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee president Dinesh Gundu Rao said BJP tried to poach their corporator ahead of the bypolls.“It is an example of what BJP is doing. They don’t have any confidence in their leaders, they are just trying to poach our leaders. They pressurised Vasanth Kumar but he came back to us. They should stop these poaching tactics.”Dinesh Gundu Rao | KPCC PresidentBengaluru Police allegedly assaulted an activist and a reporter covering the assault in KR Puram constituency. The activist, who yet to be identified, was standing near a poll booth with a banner reading “save democracy”. He was allegedly picked up by police and slapped. A journalist with an English daily recording this, too, was attacked by the officer.