What is being promised to Karnataka
voters in 2023?

The BJP, which is fighting to retain power in the state, has set a target to win at least 150 out of the 224 seats in the Karnataka State Assembly. As per media reports, party functionaries have identified the Old Mysore and Kalyan regions as areas where it will increase its vote bank by denting the JD(S)’s vote bank. Although the party seems to be relying on the caste equations in the state to engineer its strategy, the party state in-charge Arun Singh said the development work undertaken by the party in the state will help them secure their victory. They have not yet released their manifesto, but they plan to release an “action taken report” during the upcoming state budget, which will detail the fulfilment of promises made by them during the 2018 Assembly polls. The party has also made it clear that it will not be forging an alliance with any other parties for the elections. Similarly, the INC, which lost power of the state despite winning the 2018 elections, announced a tenpoint manifesto last week focusing on job creation, attracting investments, and developing tourism in the coastal region ahead of the polls. Other promises by the party included a Rs 2,000 monthly allowance to female heads of households, 200 units of free power, ten kilograms of free rice to those from poor households, among other things. Party General Secretary, Randeep Sujrewala, said the BJP has been focusing on communalism issues and ignoring the real problems of economic development in the state. The party will be undertaking its campaign in the state in two phases. In the first phase, Siddaramaiah will campaign in Uttara Karnataka and Hyderabad, and DK Shivakumar will be in the old Mysore region. In the second phase, the former will cover Dakshina Kannada, while the latter will campaign in Uttara Karnataka. The JD(S), which won only 37 seats in the 2018 polls, kickstarted its campaign in the state in November 2022. The party has dominated the Old Mysore region, which has the highest population of dominant Vokkaligas. The party started its campaign in the state from the Old Mysore region through the Pancharatna Yatra a road campaign from Mulbagal in Kolar district. Former Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy, promised to implement the Pancharatna Plan—a five-fold scheme focusing on free education, healthcare, housing, farmers’ welfare, and employment. The party has also said it has set its target of “Mission 123”—to independently form a government by winning at least 123 seats out of 224 seats in the state.

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