A victim of 'Operation Kamala', now Mayor

A victim of 'Operation Kamala', now Mayor

A man who was one among the eight corporators of Janata Dal (Secular) who switched over to BJP five years ago under ‘Operation Kamala’, only to return to the party fold later, now holds the reins of Mysore City Corporation (MCC).

 Incidentally, JD(S)- BJP share a pact, that made things much easier in the polls.

When the BJP led State government was wooing other parties elected representatives to its fold in 2008, a section of JD(S) corporators in Mysore too switched their loyalty to the saffron party. R Lingappa who was elected as the Mayor on Thursday was one among those corporators, including then JD(S) city unit president T Devaraj, H N Srikantaiah, Prabhumurthy, Kempanna, K V Mallesh, M Lakshmamma and Khamruddin.

Following their defection, the party’s strength in the Council had come down to 10 from 18, putting the party in a fix. Following this, the then Regional Commissioner M V Jayanthi had also recommended for action against them under Anti-defection Law, after conducting a probe into the same.

However, in the year 2010, three among the eight corporators who had jumped ship returned to JD(S) fold. This included R Lingappa, K V Mallesh and K  V Mallesh. While some among them returned later, Srikantaiah preferred to severe ties and contested the subsequent polls as an Independent. Prabhumurthy switched over to Congress, but suffered a loss in the polls.

In the run up to the Mayoral elections, the names of both Lingappa, K T Chaluvegowda and M J Ravikumar were doing rounds. Chaluvegowda was a Janata Dal loyalist since his earlier days, so also Ravikumar. While Lingappa had defected to the party from Congress and was out and in recently, suffice to earn the wrath of the colleagues in the party.

However, if not for a senior legislator in the party, who strongly advocated for Lingappa, the chances of two others appeared grim. Finally, Lingappa made it to the coveted seat, amidst the animosity of some party corporators, which remained unexpressed during the polls.