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The Karnataka election dates announced by the Election Commission is crucial to both BJP and the ruling Congress.

The Election Commission today announced the dates for Karnataka assembly elections. Elections will be held in a single phase on May 12 and the results will be announced on May 15. The announcement of election dates spawned a controversy as the BJP IT Cell head tweeted the dates before the official announcement.

The Election Commission said they “will look into leaks” on dates. The state has been in the spotlight where the ruling Congress hopes to retain power and resist the BJP’s aggressive campaign. While the elections are critical for the Congress that has been wiped out from most major states it used to rule, they are also important for the BJP to make in-roads into south India – a region that has proved difficult for it to foray into.

The state has seen bitter campaigning by both the parities with allegations of communal and political murders and tit-for-tat charges of large-scale corruption. Leaders from both parties including PM Modi, Congress chief Rahul Gandhi and BJP’s Amit Shah visited the state multiple times over the past few months. The ongoing term for the Karnataka assembly, which has 224 seats, expires on May 28.

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