For citizens, it is status quo versus change

For citizens, it is status quo versus change

 The demand of the citizens in Gauribidanur constituency is divided: some want status quo, while some others just want a change.

The universal request of candidates, as usual, from the citizens, is “Please don’t let us down.”

The constituency has as many as 16 candidates, but the tussle is majorly among only three contestants.

‘Victory only’

Sitting MLA N H Shivashankar Reddy is hoping to retain the seat, winning for the fourth consecutive time. Senior politician from Gauribidanur and JD(S) candidate S V Ashwatthanarayana Reddy and shows the enthusiasm of a youngster, although aged 76 years. BJP candidate M N Ravinarayana Reddy too is desperate to win, upset over the loss in the last elections.

Review of MLA

From the citizen’s point of view, some have said, “Three chances are enough for one legislator; now, we want somebody different.”

In contrast, some others have appreciated the work of Shivashankar Reddy. “He might not have brought in major industries to the taluk and constituency, but has at least succeeded in undertaking important projects of smaller scale. He would be worthy of another term,” said the voters.

Citizens who are supporters of the JD(S) and the BJP have candidly stated they would vote in favour of their respective parties’ candidates.

A neutral genre of citizens too is found in Gauribidanur constituency. “It is not a matter of our or their party. We just need a pro-citizen representative,” is their demand.

Lacking facilities

Gauribidanur is a constituency known to house several rationalists and education experts, and is a prominent education centre in all of Chikkaballapur district.

A visit to Gauribidanur, however, shows the real picture regarding the condition in the constituency and the reason for the voters’ mindsets.

There has been a long-standing demand for repair of roads, but remains unfulfilled. The water problem in both rural and urban areas of the taluk has only aggravated.

In the urban areas, the number of vehicles is fast increasing, creating problems on the streets that are getting crowded by the day. Basic facilities too remain a distant dream for the residents of Gauribidanur.

Tough contest

Shivashankar Reddy has scored a hat-trick in the Assembly polls, but winning again would not be an easy affair for him. The infight in the Congress, especially with H Ananda Kumar, taluk general secretary quitting the party on being refused the ticket and contesting as an Independent, has been a major blow.

JD(S) contestant Ashwatthanarayana Reddy had been a senior Congressman till recently. Now that he has shifted parties, a major chunk of Congress workers are expected to move their support to the JD(S) too. On the other side of the picture, some citizens are expressing apprehension about Ashwatthanarayana Reddy being able to work as before, saying he is ‘too old’ to fulfill the demands of the citizens.

Fighting hard

For the BJP, Gauribidanur has never been a strong point. Ravinarayana Reddy lost the last elections by a difference of 11,168 votes. This time, he is hoping the loss will turn a positive for him, getting him votes through sympathy factor.

CPM candidate C C Ashwatthappa, KJP’s P C Muralidhar, BSR Congress’ Somashekhar as well as Independent K Jaipal Reddy are in fray. How influential they are on the decisions of the voting citizens is a matter of interest and curiosity in Gauribidanur.

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