Mangaluru

Land of ‘Shankarpura Mallige,’ ‘Mattu Gulla’ to see tight race

Lalaji Mendon

Lalaji Mendon  

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Incumbent MLA Vinay Kumar Sorake has been given the Congress ticket again

The Kaup Assembly Constituency, which lies to the south of Udupi district, is famous for a flower, ‘Shankarpura Mallige,’ and a vegetable ‘Mattu Gulla,’ both of which enjoy the Geographical Indication (GI) tag.

Both the flower and the vegetable are famous not just in the district, but in other places as well. Efforts have been made to promote them.

The lighthouse constructed by the British government in 1901 on Kaup beach is a major tourist attraction.

The mega industries of the entire district are housed in this constituency.

They are the thermal power plant of Udupi Power Corporation Ltd (UPCL) at Yellur, the Suzlon Special Economic Zone at Nandikur, and the crude oil storage facility of Indian Strategic Petroleum Reserves Ltd (ISPRL) at Padur.

The delay in construction of the Hejmady Fisheries Harbour and Postgraduate Centre of Mangalore University in Belapu, lack of underground drainage facility in Kaup, Padubidri and Shirva towns, are among the issues in the constituency.

Of the 13 Assembly elections held since 1957, the Congress has won nine times, the BJP and the Praja Socialist Party (PSP) twice. The former Minister, late Vasanth V. Salian, represented the constituency from 1983 to 2004 winning five times in a row.

Mr. Salian was a Minister in the Cabinets of M. Veerappa Moily (1993-94) and S.M. Krishna (2002-04).

However, Lalaji Mendon of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) put an end to Mr. Salian’s reign by defeating him in 2004 Assembly elections by a margin of 1,390 votes.

Mr. Mendon repeated the feat by defeating Mr. Salian by a slender margin of 967 votes in the 2008 Assembly elections. However, Vinay Kumar Sorake of the Congress managed to snatch the constituency from Mr. Mendon by defeating him with a margin of 1,855 votes in 2013 Assembly elections.

This despite the fact that Vasanth Salian had contested as Janata Dal (Secular) candidate on denial of Congress ticket to him and polled 4,327 votes, and the Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) candidate, Abdul Hakim, getting 2,171 votes.

Mr. Sorake later went on to become the Urban Development Minister in the Siddaramaiah government. He was dropped from the Siddaramaiah Cabinet a couple of years ago. An interesting aspect of this constituency is that the margin of victory has not crossed 2,000 votes since the 2004 Assembly elections, making it a tight race for all the candidates.

The Congress has given its ticket to Mr. Sorake again and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the JD(S) are yet to announce their candidates.

Mr. Mendon, Gurme Suresh Shetty, Yashpal Suvarna, Sheela K. Shetty, Gitanjali Suvarna, Kuilady Suresh Nayak, are aspirants for the BJP ticket.

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Printable version | Dec 7, 2019 6:08:30 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Mangalore/land-of-shankarpura-mallige-mattu-gulla-to-see-tight-race/article23607763.ece

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