MLC polls: JD(S) 2, Cong, BJP 1 seat each

MLC polls: JD(S) 2, Cong, BJP 1 seat each

The BJP is slowly but surely losing its grip on the Legislative Council in the State.
In the elections to the four MLC seats from the teachers’ and graduates’ constituencies, results of which were announced on Tuesday, the BJP could retain only one seat of the three it held.

The JD(S) won two seats and the Congress one. For JD(S) candidate and sitting MLC Puttanna, it was a hat-trick. The three-time MLC won the elections by a comfortable 3,000 votes over his nearest rival Neelaiah from the BJP. Puttanna trounced Neelaiah twice in as many elections by garnering 8,531 votes. Academician and independent candidate Dr Gururaj Karjagi polled just 1,456 votes.

While sitting BJP MLCs Dr A H Shivayogi Swamy and Shashil Namoshi lost their seats, Sharanappa Mattur from the Congress and R Chowda Reddy from the JD(S) are the fresh faces elected on Tuesday.

It was a dogfight to the finish in the South-East Graduates’ Constituency elections. But in the end, sitting MLC and chief whip for the Opposition, Swamy, lost his seat to JD(S) aspirant Reddy.

After 11 rounds of counting of preferential votes, Reddy managed to scrape through in the 12th round, after all the 15 candidates were eliminated by transferring the votes to the next preferred candidate.

Reddy, who was leading by a sizeable margin, was unable to get a clear majority of more than 50 per cent of the valid votes to be declared the winner from the graduates’ constituency.

As a result, after round-by-round elimination of candidates who did not poll the required votes in the single transferable voting pattern, Reddy was able to secure 23,146 votes, which crosses the halfway mark of the 46,219 votes cast on June 20.
Swamy’s votes also had to be transferred to Reddy to secure more than 50 per cent votes.

The defeat of Swamy appears to be an indicator of the BJP losing its grip on the Legislative Council. On Tuesday, the BJP lost two of the three seats which it held for the past six years. While Swamy lost his seat to the JD(S), his colleague from the North-East Teachers’ Constituency, Namoshi lost to Congress’ Mattur by 2,089 votes. Mattur polled 9,022 votes.

The saving grace for the BJP was the retention of the West Graduates’ constituency by Sankanur Siddalingappa Veerappa who won comfortably against Vasanth Horatti of the JD(S), the son of sitting MLC Basavaraj Horatti. The BJP MLC polled 22,506 votes against the 8,574 votes garnered by Vasanth. The total number of votes polled in the constituency was 46,713.

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