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Shivakumar breaks down as Cong heads towards victory, thanks Sonia

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Bengaluru: Karnataka Congress President DK Shivakumar on Saturday made a strong case of fulfilling his chief ministerial ambitions by breaking down before media persons reminiscing the pledge taken before top party leaders including Sonia Gandhi to deliver Karnataka in the 2023 assembly election.

“I have said in the beginning …. I assured Srimati Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi, Priyanka Gandhi and Mallikarjun Kharge that I will deliver Karnataka to their fold,” he told reporters here.

This statement came in the light of the Congress leading in 132 assembly seats, way ahead of the required 113 seats to form the government. The BJP is leading in 65 seats, while JDS is leading in 21.

The verdict is heading in contrast to exit polls predicting hung assembly. Most of them had given an edge to the Congress, and a few predicted a majority for the grand old party.

Getting overwhelmed with tears recalling his time in jail, Shivakumar further said, “I can’t forget Shrimati Sonia Gandhi coming to meet me in jail when all these BJP people put me in jail.”

The Congress leader also thanked all his state party leaders including Siddaramaiah and others from booth to state level. Shivakumar also thanked the people for having expressed faith in the Congress.

Earlier, Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai conceded defeat and said, “We have not been able to make the mark despite a lot of efforts put in by everybody right from our Prime Minister. Congress has been able to make the mark.”

Bommai said the party will do a detailed analysis once all the results pour in and plug the gaps and deficiencies and look to improve upon it in the future. “We take this result in our stride, and we will go ahead and reorganise the party and come back during the Lok Sabha election,” he said.

Union minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar said the party respects and accepts the verdict in favour of the Congress. “We will contribute to our state and our people as a constructive opposition,” he said.

Reacting to the verdict in their favour, Congress leaders launched a tirade against Prime Minister Narendra Modi, holding him responsible for BJP’s defeat in Karnataka hustings.

Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel said Karnataka election result is as per their expectations, and attacked Prime Minister Narendra Modi for seeking votes by keeping himself in the front, and this it is his defeat.

Chief Ministerial aspirant Siddaramaiah said there has been no impact of PM Modi, Amit Shah and JP Nadda, the tallest BJP leaders in the state.

“I had been saying let Narendra Modi or Amit Shah or JP Nadda come how many ever times they want to the state, (but) that will have no impact on the voters of Karnataka because people are fed up with BJP, their corruption, maladministration and their anti-people politics,” he stated.

Congress General Secretary Jairam Ramesh said it is certain that the Congress has won and PM Modi has lost.

The counting of votes for the 224-member Karnataka assembly began at 8 am.

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