Mahadeva Prasad: student leader who went on to become minister

He hadn't lost Gundlupet Assembly seat since 1994

Mahadeva Prasad: student leader who went on to become minister
Cooperation and Sugar Minister H S Mahadeva Prasad, a native of Hallahalli in Gundlupet taluk and a resident of Mysuru, who passed away in Koppa of Chikkamagaluru on Tuesday, was a five-time MLA and three-time minister representing various parties.

Gundlupet Assembly constituency was represented by Abdul Nazir Saab and K S Nagarathnamma. Being the only Lingayat MLA of the Congress from the old Mysuru region, he was deemed a close confidant of Siddaramaiah and Public Works Minister
H C Mahadevappa.

He was born on August 5, 1958, and was the eldest son of H S Srikantashetty and Y B Veeramma. He attended primary school at his mother’s native place KR Nagar and joined the Ramakrishna Ashram in Mysuru for his high school. Later, he studied at JSS College and did his MA in Political Science from the University of Mysuru, Manasagangothri.

Coming under the influence of then Chief Minister D Devaraja Urs, he joined the Congress as a student in 1975. He served as the Youth Congress president of the district unit for some time. He married M C Mohanakumari on October 28, 1983, and has a son H M Ganesh Prasad.

His father, a landlord, was a freedom fighter and served as the president of the Taluk Development Board. He lost to former minister K S Nagarathnamma in the Assembly election in 1983 as a Janata Party candidate. In the 1985 and 1989 elections, Mahadeva Prasad contested against Nagarathnamma without success. After  Nagarathnamma died in 1993, the election was held in 1994 and Prasad won as the Janata Dal candidate.

Since then, he has been winning from Gundlupet constituency, albeit from different parties. In 1999, he was a JD(U) MLA, in 2004 JD(S) MLA and in 2008 and 2013 a Congress MLA.

Prasad became minister for the first time in 2004 in the Dharam Singh Cabinet and in 2007 in H D Kumaraswamy’s Cabinet. Besides, Prasad was vice-president of the State Adult Education Committee from 1990 to 1994 and Senate member of the UoM from 1994 to 1999. He was also president of Jnanabutthi Competitive Exams Training Centre for 15 years and founded Sangama Trust in Gundlupet, a charity organisation.

A government engineering college was sanctioned for Chamarajanagar town in 2007, when he was district-in-charge minister. The same year, the Government Medical College started functioning in Chamarajanagar. He was instrumental in the formation of the Male Mahadeshwara Development Authority for the hill shrine.

He was accused of getting a residential site illegally from the Karnataka Housing Board in Chamarajanagar, however, the complainant Hirbegur Nandish, withdrew the case mysteriously. His son Ganesh Prasad, who had similarly got a site in Bengaluru, returned it.

A case for submitting a false affidavit before the Election Commission about his assets while filing his nomination for the 2013 Assembly poll is pending before the Gundlupet JMFC Court.

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