Third generation of JD(S) first family faces heat in party bastion

The entry of the third generation of H.D. Deve Gowda’s family into electoral politics seems to be fomenting trouble for the Janata Dal (Secular) in what has traditionally been its stronghold — the districts of Mandya and Hassan.

While the candidature of Prajwal Revanna, son of Public Works Minster H.D. Revanna, from Hassan has been announced, Nikhil Kumaraswamy, son of Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy from Mandya, is expected to enter the fray from Mandya. Mr. Gowda, who is the incumbent MP for Hassan, has bequeathed the seat to his grandson.

Manju factor

The JD(S) had not expected much opposition in Hassan till rumours of Congress leader and former Minister A. Manju planning to switch over to the BJP, in a bid to contest from the constituency, started doing the rounds.

In the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, Mr. Manju had fought against Mr. Gowda as the Congress candidate and lost by a margin of 1,00,462 votes. He had agreed to support the JD(S) only if Mr. Gowda contested from Hassan.

Stiff opposition?

A more threatening situation exists for the party in Mandya, which is being represented by the JD(S) since 2009. Though the party has seven Assembly segments in its kitty, the Chief Minister’s actor son is likely to face stiff opposition from another film personality, Sumalatha, wife of the actor-politician late M.H. Ambareesh. She is insistent on fighting from Mandya and is expected to put up a stiff resistance. The BJP may support her either directly or indirectly.

Meanwhile, a meeting of leaders from Mandya, including the JD(S) MP, L.R. Shivarame Gowda, Congress leaders N. Chaluvarayaswamy and C.N. Balakrishna, and BJP leaders, Ashwathanarayana and C.P. Yogeshwar, in a city hotel has made the JD(S) jittery. Though leaders termed it as a “chance” meeting, it has given credence to the theory that leaders from the Congress and the JD(S) who are not happy with the decision of fielding Mr. Nikhil would support Ms. Sumalatha.

Meanwhile, Mr. Nikhil is being trolled on social media as an “outsider” to Mandya and that he should not be allowed to contest.

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Printable version | Jul 30, 2021 12:47:37 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/third-generation-of-jds-first-family-faces-heat-in-party-bastion/article26526058.ece

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