Party hopping is a common occurrence among politicians, but police officials are found to be no different. The former Director-General and Inspector-General of Police Shankar M. Bidari quitting the Samajwadi Party is a testimony to this.

Mr. Bidari, who joined the Congress in the run-up to the Assembly elections, quit the party “disappointed with the treatment meted out to him”. Later, he joined the Samajwadi Party (SP) in the run-up to the byelections to Bangalore Rural and Mandya Parliamentary constituencies. Though he headed the party’s State unit for a brief period, he left the SP when the former Union Minister Babagouda Patil replaced him as the State chief. Mr. Bidari will decide on whether to join “existing” political parties or float his own party after October 21.

In a similar vein, the former IPS officer Subhash Bharani entered politics during the run-up to the 2008 Assembly elections and joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). He unsuccessfully contested from T. Narsipur Assembly Constituency. Considering his “contribution” to the party, the BJP appointed him State’s Special Representative in New Delhi. Mr. Bharani was disappointed when his plea to contest from the Chamarajanagar (reserved) Lok Sabha constituency was turned down. Though he was made Chairman of Karnataka Silk Industries Corporation and accorded Cabinet rank, he joined the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and unsuccessfully contested in the byelection to Kollegal Assembly Constituency. Later, he joined the Janat Dal (Secular) and contested unsuccessfully from Gandhinagar in the recently concluded elections to the Assembly.

The former Commissioner of Bangalore city, H.T. Sangliana, joined the BJP and contested from Bangalore North Lok Sabha Constituency. He was expelled from the party for voting in favour of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government during the no-confidence motion in the Lok Sabha in 2008. He then joined the Congress and contested from the newly carved Bangalore Central Lok Sabha Constituency in 2009, and lost.

The former Bangalore City Police Commissioner, P. Kodandaramaiah, was the first senior police officer to taste electoral success, when he won the 1996 Lok Sabha election from Chitradurga as a nominee of the undivided Janata Dal. However, he lost in subsequent elections. He later joined the Congress, following the footsteps of Chief Minister Siddaramaiah.

Another former City Police Commissioner and Director-General of Police (Prisons), L. Revannasiddaiah, joined the Congress and contested in the 2004 Assembly polls from Chamundeshwari Assembly constituency and was defeated. He subsequently joined the BJP and contested in 2008 from the newly carved Varuna constituency and again bit the dust. He recently joined the Congress and campaigned for Mr. Siddaramaiah.

The former constable Chennigappa joined the JD(S) and scored a hat trick from Koratagere constituency and became Sericulture Minister during the Congress-JD(S) coalition government in the Dharam Singh Cabinet. When Koratagere was reserved during the delimitation, Mr. Chennigappa shifted base to Doddaballapur and lost to R.L. Jalappa’s son Narasimhaswamy. He switched to the BJP after the defeat, but returned to the JD(S) again.

The former police sub-inspector D.T. Jayakumar, who plunged into politics via the Congress (U) in 1978, got elected to the Assembly as the Janata Party candidate in 1985 from Nanjangud Assembly Constituency. Mr. Jayakumar aligned with the JD(S) and served as Housing Minister in the H.D. Kumaraswamy’s government. Before his death in 2009, he had joined the BJP.

Commenting on party hopping of top cops, a senior politician said: “It is difficult for a cop to be in politics; they behave like police officers with the workers.”

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