Now that the votes have been cast, political analysts are busy sifting through the findings of exit and opinion polls and envisaging various scenarios. There are Five probable scenarios that the counting of votes on Tuesday is likely to throw up. Siddaramaiah is most likely to be the next chief minister of Karnataka. Who is contesting from The only thing that could torpedo this is him losing from both Badami and Chamundeshwari constituencies. If Congress befalls short of the majority by a handful of seats, it can always fall back on independent candidates, many of who could be party rebels.
The demand for a Dalit CM growing louder, the party may decide to have a deputy CM with KPCC president G Parameshwara being a strong contender for this role. Congress may even play card for a Lingayat as deputy CM in an improvement of its efforts to enlist Lingayat support.
Will BJP Cross the half-way mark in Karnataka?
BJP will form the government with B S Yeddyurappa as chief minister. Ballari MP B Sreeramulu, who is contesting from two different seats, is likely to be named as deputy CM with the party keen on consolidating support among scheduled tribes with an eye on the 2019 elections. If BJP falls short of the majority by 8-10 seats as predicted by many exit polls; the party will try to form the government with help from independents MLAs. It may later poach opposition MLAs, get them to resign and contest again as it had done in 2008 through its infamous Operation Lotus.
JD(S) Game Changer for Karnataka or a threat to BJP?
JD(S) or Janata Dal-Secular may form the government with H D Kumaraswamy as chief minister with outside support either from BJP or Congress. BJP might agree to support JD(S) from outside keeping the 2019 Lok Sabha elections in mind and also its resolve to have a Congress-Mukt Bharat. Such a move will also decrease the morale of Congress as it will remain in power only in PPP aka Punjab, Mizoram and Pondicherry. JD(S) might also give outside support to Congress to keep BJP out of power and to further its plan of making a grand alliance before 2019 Lok Sabha polls to face BJP.
Who will become the largest Party? Congress or BJP
Congress enters into a power-sharing agreement with JD(S) and also draws support from independents to shore up its seats while BJP may strike a deal with the JD(S). Again the details of the power-sharing agreement depend on the numbers the latter has. In case of a 50:50 arrangement, where the two parties will have booked their CM for 2 and a half years by turn, BJP is unlikely to concede the primary claim on the post to JD(S), given its previous experience with the latter.