Heavy polling for a Karnataka assembly seat

Bangalore, May 28 (IANS) Around 80 percent of over 160,000 eligible voters in the Periyapatna assembly constituency in Karnataka Tuesday cast their ballot and the result May 31 is keenly awaited by the ruling Congress.

Periyapatna did not vote May 5 when assembly election was held as polling was countermanded there following the death of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate.

"The polling was peaceful and around 80 percent voting has taken place," a spokesperson for the state election authorities told reporters here.

The Congress is comfortably placed in the 225-member assembly having won 121 seats in the May 5 poll.

However because Periyapatna is in Chief Minister Siddaramaiah's home district of Mysore, about 130 km from here, winning the seat is seen in political circles as a matter of prestige for him.

The battle is mainly between K. Venkatesh of Congress and K. Mahadev of Janata Dal-Secular though R.T. Satish of the BJP and five others are also in the fray.

The Janata Dal-Secular is also desperate to win the Periyapatna seat as that would take its tally in the assembly to one more than the BJP. The two parties have won 40 seats each.

The remaining have been taken by smaller parties and independents.


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