Cong's 'real' asset is now youngest MLA

Priya Krishna sets record by defeating minister in by-polls


The 25-year, three-month and 23-day old Congress candidate has defeated 60-year-old Muzrai Minister V Somanna of the BJP. This is the first time Somanna, who has been in politics for nearly 26 years, has been defeated in an Assembly election.

Kampli BJP MLA Suresh Babu (26) had been the youngest MLA of the current State Assembly. Now, Krishna enjoys this distinction.

Somanna and Priya Krishna’s father M Krishnappa have been friends for a long time. Somanna began his career in politics as corporator in Bangalore City Corporation in 1983, when Priya Krishna was not even born.

One of richest

Priya Krishna is also among the richest MLAs in the state. As per his declaration before the election commission, he owns property worth Rs 770 crore. Now both he and his father Krishnappa, MLA from Vijayanagar, will be in the assembly.

Krishna, who has MA and LLB degrees, is a golf player. He has represented Karnataka in the 2001 National Games, which were held in Punjab. Like his father, he is into real estate business.

Priya Krishna defeated Somanna by a margin of 5,239 votes. In the 2008 assembly elections, Somanna won on a Congress ticket, and joined the BJP during the recent Lok Sabha elections.

The Bharatiya Janata Party gave him part credit for the victory of Ananth Kumar in Bangalore South constituency, by inducting him into the cabinet in June.

The Chief Minister made Housing and Muzrai minister Krishnaiah Setty resign to accommodate Somanna.

Somanna to stay?

The ruling BJP is contemplating having V Somanna continue as minister, despite his loss in Govindarajnagar. A member of the legislative council is likely to be made to vacate his or her seat so that Somanna to make it to the council.

Sources said Chief Minister Yeddyurappa is in favour of retaining Somanna as minister. The only option for the Chief Minister is to make him a member elected to the council from the Assembly, or nominate him to the council.

Unlucky ministry

It may be a coincidence. None of the ministers who had held the Muzrai portfolio had been able to make it to the assembly when they contested the election after their term as ministers.

The ministers who had held the portfolio were Sudheendra Kasabe, C Veeranna, Raja Amaresh Naik, Haranahalli Ramaswamy, Baburao Chunchunsur and Suma Vasanth. When they contested the polls after completing their term, they lost the battle. Now Somanna joins the list.

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