New Delhi: Congress’ troubleshooter DK Shivaumar on Saturday conceded his party’s defeat in the Karnataka by-elections as early trends showed the BJP leading in 12 of the total 15 constituencies. “We have to agree with the mandate of the voters of these 15 constituencies. People have accepted the defectors. We have accepted defeat, I don’t think we have to be disheartened”, stated Shivakumar.

Notably, the by-polls were considered a litmus test for four-month-old Yediyurappa-led BJP government as it needed to win at least six of the 15 seats to remain in majority in the 224-member assembly.

At the time of filing the story, the party is leading in 12 out of 15 Assembly segments. Besides, it has registered victory in Yellapur seat. The opposition Congress and Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S), on the other hand, are leading in 2 seats each. According to the Election Commission website, an Independent candidate is also leading in one seat.

While the BJP is ahead in Athani, Kagwad, Gokak, Hirekuru, Vijayanagar, Chikkaballapur, Ranibennur, K.R. Pura and Mahalakshmi, the Congress is leading in Shivajinagara and Hunasuru. The JD-S is leading in Yeshvanthapura and KR Pete. The Independent candidate who was earlier with the BJP is leading in Hosakote in Bengaluru Rural district.

Following the trends, BJP leader Subramanian Swamy took to Twitter and congratulated his ‘long standing’ friend Yediyurappa. He said,”I am happy that party colleague and long standing friend Yediyurappa has demonstrated a fine voter support in the crucial state of Karnataka by winning so many seats in the Assembly by-elections.”

By-elections in the 15 constituencies in the southern state were held on December 5. The BJP and the opposition Congress contested in all the 15 Assembly seats, while the JD-S in 12 seats.