K'taka Legislative Council VC Dharme Gowda found dead

Karnataka Legislative Council deputy chairperson Dharme Gowda found dead

According to reports, a death note found near the corpse referred to the recent incident at the upper house of the state Assembly

Karnataka Legislative Council Vice Chairperson Dharme Gowda. Credit: DH File Photo

Sixty-four-year-old Karnataka Legislative Council deputy chairperson S L Dharme Gowda was found dead near a railway track at Gunasagara in Kadur taluk in the wee hours of Tuesday. It is suspected that he died by suicide.

He had reportedly left his farmhouse at Sakharayapattana after 10 pm on Monday. After he failed to return home, family members began searching for him and found him dead on a railway track between Gunasagara and Kabli.

According to sources close to Dharme Gowda, he had asked the driver of the car to park the vehicle near the railway track at Gunasagara and had reportedly told the driver on the pretext of meeting someone.

All necessary arrangements have been made at District McGann hospital in the Shivamogga for autopsy. Police security has been beefed up around the hospital. MLC R Prasanna Kumar, Urban Development Minister B A Basavaraju, district in-charge Minister K S Eshwarappa and other elected representatives are present at the hospital.

Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa expressed shock over the incident, terming it "unfortunate". He lauded the MLC for efficiently conducting the legislative council as its deputy chairman.

JD(S) patriarch and former prime minister H D Deve Gowda, in a tweet, expressed shock over Dharme Gowda's death and remembered him as a gentleman politician. His death is a loss to the state, Deve Gowda added.

JD(S) leader and former chief minister H D Kumaraswamy said Dharme Gowda was like a brother to him. "His death has caused a shock to me. He was an upright politician," Kumaraswamy said in a tweet.

S L Dharme Gowda was born on December 15, 1955, at Sarapanahalli to S R Lakshmayya and Krishnamma. He completed his primary and secondary education at Sakharayapattana and later completed his graduation at Chikkamagaluru.

He was close to the family of JD (S) Supremo H D Deve Gowda.

He started his political career as the member of Bilekallahalli Mandala Panchayat. Dharme Gowda was elected as MLA from Birur Assembly constituency in 2004 and served in the cooperative sector for several years. He had in the past served as the President of Janata Bazar, President of Chikkamagaluru DCC Bank and director of Milk union.

Dharme Gowda is survived by his wife Mamatha, son Sonal and daughter Saloni. His brother S L Bhoje Gowda is also an MLC.