Former minister M Mahadev, better known as ‘Benki’ Mahadev, quit the JD(S) on Friday and submitted his resignation letter through speedpost to the party supremo H D Deve Gowda.
A prominent Veerashaiva leader in old Mysore region, especially Mysore and Chamarajanagar districts, Mahadev was upset at the party ‘sidelining’ him.
He said: “At the time of joining the party, both Deve Gowda and Kumaraswamy had offered a suitable post. But, what I could get was the membership of National Executive Committee.” Other reasons for his decision to end the two-year stint in the JD(S) include denial of the ticket to contest from the Chamundeshwari and Varuna constituencies; elevation of Krishnappa, a recent entrant to the party, as the State president and speculation over not getting a ticket to contest the coming Lok Sabha elections.
“Also, JD(S) threw its secularism to the winds, entering into an alliance with the BJP and also KJP in the recent byelections to Mandya and Bangalore Rural Lok Sabha seats,” Mahadev said.
He was in the Congress for nearly three decades, since he contested his maiden Assembly elections in 1983 from Nanjangud constituency (earlier general seat now reserved to SC candidate). He quit the party in 2008 to join the BJP and unsuccessfully contested elections from Chamarajanagar. Disappointed when the then chief minister B S Yeddyurappa didn’t field him in the elections to the Legislative Council from Mysore and Chamarajanagar local bodies segment, he quit BJP and joined JD(S) two years ago.
His resignation comes ahead of the JD(S) national executive committee meeting slated for October 24. While Mahadev is likely to decide on his next move after holding a meeting with his coterie of leaders, newly appointed Samajvadi Party State president Babagowda Patil and former MLA Goolihatti Shekar are said to have invited him to the party. MLC and former minister V Somanna of the BJP has already spoken with him over phone to know his future course of action.