The performance of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was poor in Mangalore City South Assembly Constituency in 2013 elections to Mangalore City Corporation council when compared to its achievement in 2007 elections.
In the two elections, the party contested all the 60 seats. Of them, 38 seats are under Mangalore City South Assembly constituency, represented by N. Yogish Bhat and the rest under Mangalore City North Assembly Constituency, represented by J. Krishna Palemar.
This time the party won only 11 seats compared to 22 seats it held under the Mangalore South constituency. It won nine seats under Mangalore North – down three seats.
Mr. Bhat has won the Legislative Assembly seat four times in a row since 1994 though the Congress was holding the reins of the Mangalore City Corporation council till 2007.
According to K. Monappa Bhandary, MLC and spokesperson of the Dakshina Kannada unit of the BJP, rebels contesting in nine wards, and the changes made in Master Plan II for Mangalore Local Planning Area and the image of the party getting spoilt at the State level due to various issues affected the performance of the party in the city.
Mr. Bhandary admitted that implementation of self assessment scheme for assessing property tax did affect the party’s performance to some extent. But changes made in the master plan regarding grant of housing licence did cost the party dearly in the civic elections, he said.
Rebels play havoc
Revathi Puthran, a BJP rebel who contested as an independent from Surathkal West under Mangalore North constituency defeated Kishore Puthran of the BJP by 140 votes.
Rebels appear to have hurt the party in Marakada, Hoige Bazar, Padavu West, Alape North, Derebail South, Boloor and Bolar wards.
The number of votes polled by rebels was more than the margin of defeat of the official candidate in these wards.
For example, in Marakada ward Ganesh Malli, who was the BJP’s candidate in 2007 election, deserted the party this time and contested as the Janata Dal (Secular) candidate.
He secured 583 votes and lost the election. The Congress candidate Harinath won from the ward against his nearest rival Kishore Rai of the BJP with a margin of 527 votes. The margin of votes is less than the votes secured by Mr. Malli.
Rebel Prema Muralidhara in Hoigebazar ward Prema Muralidhara got 273 votes the victory margin for the Congress candidate over the BJP candidate was 101 votes. In Padavu West rebel Sharada Shetty 613 votes while BJP’s Shakeela Kava, former Deputy Mayor, lost the seat by 23 votes.
In Alape North, Mohan Padil as Janata Dal (Secular) candidate secured 877 votes where the margin was 213 votes. In Maroli, James D’Souza, as an independent candidate secured 1,074 votes much more than BJP’s nominee Jagadeesh Shenoy who managed a mere 961 votes.