CB'Pur: BJP halts Cong stalwart in his tracks

CB'Pur: BJP halts Cong stalwart in his tracks

B N Bache Gowda of BJP

Chikkaballapur: The BJP wrote history by wresting Chikkaballapur parliamentary seat, a Congress citadel, from former chief minister M Veerappa Moily. 

BJP's B N Bache Gowda, who defeated Moily by a margin of 1.82 lakh votes, is the first candidate to ensure victory for the saffron party in this leftist ideology stronghold seat. 

Chikkaballapur seat has witnessed 11 Lok Sabha elections since 1977. Barring in 1996, when R L Jalappa won from Janata Dal, Congress candidates won it 10 times.

In the last two parliamentary elections, the BJP struggled to make inroads. The party had failed to win even an Assembly segment so far. 

However, in the last two Lok Sabha polls, the BJP went on increasing its vote share. The party succeeded in the third attempt.

Gowda shattered Moily's dream of a hat-trick who won in 2009 and 2014. Moily was planning to sail through due to alliance between the Congress and the JD(S).

It is clear that anti-incumbency factor, lack of support from local leaders and Moily's repeated false assurances led to the Congress' debacle.

Gowda exploited the rift between the alliance partners. He managed to woo Vokkaliga voters, who form the majority in the constituency.

Voters were upset with Moily's repeated assurance of providing water through Yettinahole project since 2013. In the last few months, Moily was claiming that he would implement project to flow Krishna river water to the district. However, voters did not buy his claims. 

In the 2014 poll, though Gowda lost to Moily, he managed to give a tough fight. Vokkaliga community votes were divided between Gowda and JD(S) candidate H D Kumaraswamy, helping Moily. 

This time, Gowda was the only prominent leader from Vokkaliga community in the fray. He also polled traditional BJP votes which increased his lead over Moily.

Of the eight Assembly segments in Chikkaballapur parliamentary seat, the BJP has only one MLA in Yelahanaka segment. Moily did not get considerable votes from the seven Assembly segments represented by the JD(S) and the Congress. 

The top brass of the party took political decisions without taking local leaders into confidence that proved costly for the national party.