Santhosh Bhandary elected ZP chief, Jagannath deputy

Congress member wins with support from BJP, JD(S)!


Santhosh Kumar Bhandary and H Jagannath Salian who were elected as Dakshina Kannada Zilla Panchayat president and vice president respectively.

Amidst various speculations and political engineering, Bhandary defeated his Congress opponent Sundar Gowda Ichila by four votes. Zilla Panchayat has a total of 35 members of which 15 are Congress members, 15 BJP and 5 JD(S).

Santhosh Kumar Bhandary bagged 19 votes, which include 15 votes of BJP members, two votes from JD(S) members Sucharitha Shetty and Rajashri Hegde, one personal vote and one vote from Congress member Sadananada Malli.

Ichila got 15 votes, which include 13 votes from Congress and two votes from JD(S) members Dharanendra Kumar and Babu Mugera. JD(S) member Aziz Malar remained absent.

H Jagannath Salian from BJP bagged 19 votes as against his Congress opponent Chandrashekar Kamath who secured 15 votes. The President and Vice-President will remain in term till January 29, 2011.

‘My heart is in BJP’

“Though I came to ZP on Congress ticket, my heart is in BJP,” these are the words of newly elected ZP President Santhosh Kumar Bhandary. The situation in ZP has left most people with one question in mind that whether Bhandary’s victory is BJP’s gain.

Many BJP members had speculated and declared prior to election that Bhandary will become the President, provided arrangements are not altered at last minute.

Santhosh Kumar Bhandary got elected as the member of Dakshina Kannada Zilla Panchayat on Congress ticket from Sangabettu constituency. When Sucharitha Shetty from JD(S) aspired to become the ZP President, Santhosh Kumar Bhandary violated the Congress party whip and voted for Sucharitha Shetty. The move cost dear to Bhandary as Congress moved a case against him for violating the whip, leaving him high and dry.

However, it was time for Sucharitha Shetty to repay the gratitude to Bhandary during this election and promptly, Sucharitha Shetty along with his ally Rajashri Hegde voted for Bhandary. BJP did not field its candidate for the post of President and unanimously backed Bhandary. It was left with no option but to support Bhandary, which it did wholeheartedly learning it fully well that their loss will be Congress’ gain.

Mysore Regional Commissioner Jayanthi conducted the election. CEO Shivashankar, DC V Ponnuraj and others were present.

Minister Krishna J Palemar, MP Nalin Kumar Kateel and BJP workers in large numbers congratulated Bhandary.

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