S.P. Dinesh will fight from South-West Graduates' Constituency

The Congress has announced its candidate for State Legislative Council election from South-West Graduates' Constituency six months in advance.

Legislative Council chairperson D.H. Shankaramurthy has represented the constituency for four consecutive terms from 1988 as a BJP candidate. The Congress this time had announced S.P. Dinesh as its candidate, who is serving as Shimoga District Congress Committee general secretary and a member of Kuvempu University Syndicate.

Mr. Dinesh, an advocate, is known for his organising skills, and is associated with many organisations such as Red Cross Society, and Graduates' Cooperative Society. The South West Graduate's constituency comprise Shimoga, Dakshina Kannada, Udupi, Chikmagalur, and Kodagu districts, and, Honnali and Channagiri taluks of Davangere district.

Mr. Dinesh is from the Lingayat community which forms a major chunk of the population in Shimoga, Chikmagalur, and Davangere districts. A functionary of Congress District Committee told The Hindu that the party was eager to win back the Lingayat community which had been supporting the BJP. The Congress had fielded Mahima Patel, son of former Chief Minister J.H. Patel as its candidate from Shimoga Local Bodies Constituency last year, he said. The Assembly segments which Chief Minister D.V. Sadananda Gowda, BJP State unit president K.S. Eshwarappa, and the former Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa represent come under South West Graduates's constituency. The BJP was likely to field Mr. Shankaramurthy as its candidate again.

Election management

The professional election management practices such as motivating the graduates to register their names in electoral rolls, and writing letters to each voter during election had helped the BJP to register four consecutive victories here. It seemed the Congress had learnt lessons from the earlier poll debacles.

Shimoga District Congress Committee president Prasanna Kumar told The Hindu over telephone that the Congress activists were providing information to the graduates on getting their names registered in the voters' list.

Shimoga District Youth Congress newly-elected president H.C. Yogish said: “The membership drive held during the election for Youth Congress has instilled confidence in us. Over 9,500 youth have become members of Youth Congress in Shimoga. A similar campaign will be held to enrol the youth as voters for South-West Teacher's constituency and South-West Graduates Constituency.”

  • S.P. Dinesh is from the the Lingayat community
  • The BJP is likely to field Shankaramurthy as its candidate