Congress tally goes up with Jayanagar win

Congress tally goes up with Jayanagar win

Soumya Reddy (centre), image courtesy Facebook

First-time contestant and Congress candidate Soumya Reddy won the elections to the Jayanagar Assembly constituency with 54,458 votes on Wednesday.

This victory has become doubly important as she not only won at the BJP’s stronghold, but is the only woman to have won from the city in the 2018 polls. BJP had held this constituency for almost a decade.

Unlike her father and former home minister Ramalinga Reddy, she was elected directly as an MLA even before becoming a corporator. Soumya, who was an office bearer of the Bangalore Youth Congress Committee, is known for her involvement in animal rights activities and environment and forests.

BJP candidate B N Prahlad, brother of former MLA the late B N Vijaykumar, put up a tough fight with 51,571 votes, losing by a margin of 2,887 votes.
Ramalinga Reddy said he was confident of a win here.

“It was an expected win here. I was contesting from this constituency and have won all four times, till I went to the neighbouring BTM Layout. I was sure that Congress would get 15 seats in Bengaluru city,” he said.

Soumya Reddy said, “I am very elated and grateful to the people who have blessed me in this constituency and I will develop this constituency according to the manifesto.”

The elections to the constituency were countermanded after Vijaykumar’s death. Senior BJP leaders Ananthkumar and R Ashok had personally taken up the responsibility to campaign for Prahlad.

Although there was said to be some opposition to Prahlad’s candidature from some quarters in the party, later corporators made it clear that supported him.

Ramalinga Reddy also thanked former prime minister HD Deve Gowda for withdrawing JD(S) contestant Kalegowda from the polls and extending support to the Congress.

Independent candidate Ravikrishna Reddy gathered a mere 1,861 votes despite campaigning for almost a year and accusing other candidates of malpractices like distribution of goodies.

He is perhaps the only independent candidate to have gained more than 1,000 votes in the city this election. He was earlier associated with Aam Aadmi Party.

State BJP president B S Yeddyurappa welcomed the verdict of the people in the constituency. "The BJP candidate in Jayanagar has lost by a narrow margin. I thank all those who supported the party in the elections. I also thank the electorate in the teachers' and the graduates' constituencies where BJP candidates have emerged victorious," he said.

KPCC president G Parameshwara congratulated Soumya Reddy on her victory in Jayanagar. "The Congress has wrested the seat from the BJP. I thank the people of the constituency for supporting the party," he said.