Jayanagar victory a morale booster for Congress, coalition government

Celebration time: Sowmya Reddy of the Congress, who won the Jayanagar Legislative Assembly seat in Bengaluru on Wednesday by defeating B.N. Prahlad of the BJP, being greeted by a supporters.   | Photo Credit: V. Sreenivasa Murthy

At a time when the Congress–JD(S) coalition government in the State is looking at strengthening its position, the victory of Congress candidate Sowmya Reddy in the Jayanagar Assembly constituency on Wednesday has come as a solace to the both parties.

With her victory against BJP’s B.N. Prahlad, Ms. Reddy, the MLA-elect, will be the only woman among the 28 legislators in Bengaluru Urban district.

Jayanagar Assembly constituency
  • Total votes polled: 1,11,580
  • Sowmya Reddy (Congress): 54,458
  • B.N. Prahlad (BJP): 51,571
  • Kale Gowda (JD-S): 817
  • Ravi Krishna Reddy (independent): 1,861
  • NOTA: 848

An elated Ms. Reddy told The Hindu she was grateful to the voters. “I’m very happy. This is a victory for the Congress cadre. I have been working as an activist at the grassroots level for the past 15 years. I decided to take the plunge into electoral politics to serve more people. I want to make Jayanagar a model constituency,” she said.

Congress supporters began the celebrations early on Wednesday when a clear trend of her victory began to emerge. A large number of supporters had gathered outside SSMRV College in Jayanagar 4T Block where the counting was held.

With this, the tally of the Congress in the 224-member Karnataka Legislative Assembly has gone up to 79. While the Congress had initially won 78 seats and later secured the in Rajarajeshwarinagar constituency (the polling for which was held on May 28), there was a setback owing to the demise of party MLA for Jamkhandi Siddu Nyamagouda in a road accident. The Assembly has 104 members of the BJP, 36 of the JD(S), and one of the BSP, in addition to two Independents. Apart from Jamkhandi, byelections will also be held in Ramanagaram constituency as Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy, who had won from both Ramanagaram and Channapatna constituencies, quit the former seat.

Ms. Reddy’s voctory has helped the Congress wrest the Jayanagar seat from the BJP after 10 years. While BJP’s B.N. Vijayakumar, who died recently, had won in the 2008 and 2013 elections, Congress leader Ramalinga Reddy, Ms. Reddy’s father, had represented this constituency for four consecutive terms prior to 2008.

Independent candidate Ravi Krishna Reddy, an anti-corruption activist, was disappointed as he polled only 1,861 votes. As many as 848 voters exercised the NOTA option.

The victory of Ms. Reddy is being seen in the Congress circles as a shot in the arm for her father. Mr. Reddy is expected to use the occasion to demand a ministerial berth for himself, sources said.

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Printable version | Oct 17, 2021 5:56:23 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/jayanagar-victory-a-morale-booster-for-congress-coalition-government/article24157398.ece

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