New Delhi: Riding a Modi wave, the BJP has swept coastal Karnataka by winning 18 out of 21 assembly seats, regaining control over the region which is known as a communal tinderbox.
The Congress managed to secure only three seats, down from 13 seats, while JD(S) failed to open its account this election as well.
The BJP had bagged 14 seats during 2008 assembly poll, when it first formed a government in the state, but it fell sharply to five in 2013 due to a split in the party.
Out of eight seats in Dakshina Kannada district in 2018 assembly poll, Congress candidate and sitting MLA UT Abdul Khader won Mangalore seat by 19,739 seats, defeating BJP’s Santhosh Kumar Rai Boliyaru, as per the official data.
The other seven seats in the district were won by BJP candidates Rajesh Naik (from Bantwal), Bharath Shetty (Mangalore north), Vedavyas Kamath (Mangalore south), Umanatha A Kotian (Moodabidri), Sanjeev Matandoor (Puttur), Angara S (Sullia) and Harish Poonja (Bethangady).
Out of six seats in Uttara Kannada district, BJP won four seats – Sunil Biliya Naik (Bhatkal), Roopali Santosh Naik (Karwar), Dinakar Keshav Shetty (Kumta) and Kageri Visheshwar Hegde (Sirsi)
Whereas in Udupi district, from where Prime Minister Narendra Modi kick-started the election campaign, the BJP secured all five seats this time, up from one seat from last poll.
BM Sukumar Shetty (Byndoor), V Sunil Kumar (Karkala), Lalaji R Mendon (Kapu), Haladi Srinivas Shetty (Kundapura) and Raghupati Bhat (Udupi) from the BJP won the seats here.
In Kodagu, BJP candidates Appachu Ranjan MP won from Madikeri and KG Bopiah from Virajpet seat.
Though emerging as the single largest party, the BJP is short of the majority mark 112. Congress has extended support to JD(S) to form the government in the southern state.