Tuesday, January 22, 2019
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Tables turned, BJP scrambles to 'explore all options' to form govt

New Delhi
More than a year after the assembly elections in Goa and Manipur where it formed governments despite not being the single largest party in the polls, the BJP Tuesday found the tables turned in Karnataka.
Emerging as the single largest party but short of majority in the Karnataka House, it was scrambling to plot a strategy by evening. Addressing party workers at the BJP headquarters in New Delhi, party president Amit Shah, in the presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, thanked the people of Karnataka for the"victory" and"making it Congress-mukt".
But the mood in the BJP, which was euphoric when trends during the day suggested it was going to cross the half-way mark in Karnataka, turned sombre once it became clear that a simple majority would elude the party.
Referring to the proverbial hare-and-tortoise race, sources said there was a feeling in the BJP that it had been outsmarted by its rival despite holding the"advantages". The developments in the second half of the day, sources said, were unexpected.
With the scenario"fluid" and the BJP exploring options, the party central leadership has rushed J P Nadda, Dharmendra Pradhan and Prakash Javadekar to Bengaluru. P Muralidhar Rao, party general secretary in-charge of Karnataka who had come to the national capital for a meeting Monday, also returned to the state after meeting Amit Shah.
B S Yeddyurappa, BJP's chief ministerial candidate, has cancelled his trip to New Delhi. Party sources said the leaders have been asked to"explore all possibilities" to"see that the mandate is respected".
"People of Karnataka have voted for change... Congress has lost this time. Even after being rejected, they want to form the government. I condemn this," Yeddyurappa said.

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