Mayor poll: Lost opportunity of Congress

Mayor poll: Lost opportunity of Congress

The election did not look like a BJP-JD(S) alliance as the three parties fielded their candidates in the council which had 72 votes

BJP leaders, including District in-Charge Minister S T Somashekar greet Mayor Sunanda Palanetra in Mysuru. Credit: DH File Photo

The Congress party seems to have lost an opportunity as the BJP managed to get the Mysuru City Corporation mayor's post in the election on August 25. The saffron party is weak in the old Mysuru region. The JD(S) is the main rival for the Congress.

The election did not look like a BJP-JD(S) alliance as the three parties fielded their candidates in the council which had 72 votes. This time, it is one vote less as ward 36 is vacant. The bypoll for the ward will be held on September 3.

Of 65 wards, the BJP leads with 22 corporators, followed by the Congress 19 and the JD(S) 17. There are five Independents, one BSP Corporator and one vacancy.

BJP's MP Prathap Simha, MLAs S A Ramadass and L Nagendra, Tanveer Sait of Congress and G T Devegowda of JD(S) and MLCs of the JD(S) Sandesh Nagaraj, K T Srikantegowda and Marithibbegowda had the right to vote.

Devegowda and Sandesh Nagaraj did not participate.

BJP's Sunanda Palanetra polled 26 votes, Ashwini Ananthu of JD(S) and H M Shantakumari 22 votes each.

Barring Sait, no leader from the Congress, including Leader of the Opposition Siddaramaiah, seemed to do anything to wrest the post. Siddaramaiah was unhappy with the way in which the Congress compromised for the deputy mayor’s post for Anwar Baig leaving the mayor’s post to Rukmini Madegowda of the JD(S) last February.

As per the agreement, Pushpalatha Jaganath of the Congress was elected in the first term. Tasneem of the JD(S) got a second term in 2020. The Congress' candidate had to get the chance for the third in 2021, but Congress had to compromise as the JD(S) was in demand and the BJP wanted the power.

Mahesh said, “The Congress would have had an upper hand if the JD(S) sacrificed the mayor’s post. The party wanted the Congress to support the JD(S) candidate. Siddaramaiah and KPCC president D K Shivakumar did not contact former prime minister H D Deve Gowda and former chief minister H D Kumaraswamy. The JD(S) fielded a candidate.”

The development is likely to cost the Congress dear.

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