The Bharatiya Janata Party’s lacklustre performance in the Mysore City Corporation council elections, the results of which were announced on Monday, indicates an erosion of the party’s vote bank in its traditional urban stronghold.
The BJP’s tally reduced from 18 to 12 in the 65-member council. Constant infighting and a slew of corruption charges at the State-level seem to have impacted the party’s performance.
Moreover, the Karnataka Janata Paksha (KJP) has cut into its vote share.
The KJP won just one seat in Mysore, although it contested in 53 wards. But, the KJP split the votes in nearly six to eight wards and affected the chances of BJP candidates who came second in 17 wards.
For example, in ward no. 4, BJP candidate M.D. Parthasarthy lost by two votes to N. Sunil Kumar (Congress). KJP candidate H.V. Bhaskar secured 463 votes there.
In ward no. 3, BJP candidate V.V. Vidya polled 1,321 votes, and was the nearest rival to Sameena Jameen of the BSR Congress who was elected with 1,719 votes. The KJP candidate got 457 votes.
BJP candidate from ward no. 7 C. Eshwara got 1,942 votes and lost by a narrow margin of 13 votes to Purushottam of the Congress. KJP candidate P.T. Krishna secured 1,089 votes.
In ward no. 8, BJP candidate Desi secured 969 votes, losing to Independent Channappa, who polled 1,225 votes. BSR Congress and KJP candidates together accounted for about 250 votes.
In Ramdas’s backyard
Incidentally, Krishnaraja Assembly constituency has 22 wards. District in-charge Minister S.A. Ramdas has assiduously cultivated voters here, but the BJP managed to win just 9 wards there.
H.S. Shankarlinge Gowda, MLA for Chamaraja constituency, who has identified with the Janata Dal (S) seems to have made an impact, with the Janata Dal (S) winning in nine wards and the BJP in only one.
Despite the lacklustre performance, BJP workers put on a brave face and insisted this was no barometer of success in the Assembly polls.