Will Cong's Ravishankar foil Sa Ra Mahesh’s hat-trick win?

Will Cong's Ravishankar foil Sa Ra Mahesh’s hat-trick win?

JD(S) State President H D Kumarsway, K S Rangappa, Sa. Ra. Mahesh takes out a road show Chamaraja assembly constituency, at K G Koppalu in Mysuru on Friday.-Photo by Savitha. B R

Two-time MLA Sa Ra Mahesh from JD(S) will have to face a tough battle as there is a popularity wave in favour of Congress candidate D Ravishankar, also ZP member in Krishnaraja Nagar (KR Nagar) constituency. It will be hat-trick win for Sa Ra Mahesh if he wins the elections.

Dominated by both Kuruba and Vokkaliga community voters, KR Nagar is a strong fort of the JD(S), with Mahesh winning in 2008 and 2013 elections. H G Shwetha, a Vokkaliga, is the BJP candidate. Hosahalli Venkatesh, also a Vokkaliga, was an aspirant of the BJP ticket. But the party decided on Shwetha Gopal, wife of BJP district spokesperson Gopal.

She had earlier contested the Zilla Panchayat elections. Miffed over the party’s decision, Venkatesh has entered the fray as an Independent.

Ravishankar’s father Doddaswamegowda had lost the 2013 polls to Mahesh by a margin of around 15,000 votes. While Mahesh of the JD(S) emerged winner with 81,475 votes, Doddaswamegowda of the Congress polled 66,405 votes. This time, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah chose Ravishankar, a Kuruba representative.

The BJP’s choice of Shwetha has given rise to rumours of a possible JD(S)-BJP tacit to ensure that Vokkaliga votes are not divided. Various development works and the support of the farming community is the strength of Mahesh. He has formed several youth associations in the constituency for the benefit of the people.

There were rumours that a few JD(S) leaders (Bhavani Revanna) have been hatching a conspiracy to defeat Mahesh. However, it was denied by party state president H D Kumaraswamy, who assured that ‘all is well’ in the party.

Ravishankar is popular due to his down to earth attitude. A section of the residents of the constituency, especially youths, feel that they want a change and are moving towards the Congress.

Political analysts feel that it would be a close finish this time in KR Nagar constituency. While Sa Ra Mahesh is eyeing a hat-trick, Ravishankar is hoping to break into the JD(S) bastion.