Karnataka DyCM DK Shivakumar rules out contesting in Channapatna by-poll

He even wondered aloud why there would be bye-elections in the Kanakapura Assembly segment from where he is an MLA.

BySouth First Desk

Published Jun 21, 2024 | 5:19 PM Updated Jun 21, 2024 | 5:19 PM

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Karnataka Deputy Chief Minister DK Shivakumar on Friday, 21 June, ruled out contesting in the Channapatna by-poll.

He even wondered aloud why there would be bye-elections in the Kanakapura Assembly segment from where he is an MLA.

Two days ago, Shivakumar said, “A significant change in my political career happened from Channapatna. I have come to Anjaneya temple in Kengal to start a new chapter in my political career.”

This gave rise to speculations that he was willing to contest from the Channapatna Assembly segment, which fell vacant after MLA HD Kumaraswamy won the Mandya Lok Sabha election.

BJP MLA and former minister S Suresh Kumar called the purported “by-poll in Kanakapura” a “Tughlaq-like decision” and a waste of public money.

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Rules out the possibility of him contesting

“Why will there be any bye-election in Kanakapura? I am an MLA from Kanakapura and the state president of my party (Congress). There is a responsibility on me. This is my region and I am a leader there,” Shivakumar told reporters on Friday.

“Me and Chief Minister Siddaramaiah will lead the elections (in Channapatna),” he added.

Explaining further, Shivakumar said he has only asked people there to support him. “I am from that district (Ramanagara). I have asked the voters there to give us strength… They will favour us if they trust us,” the deputy chief minister said.

Commenting on those who criticised him, Shivakumar said, “Those who are writing an obituary of my political career should know that there is a bigger power behind me, which is people’s power.”

Earlier, BJP state president BY Vijayendra said it was left to the Congress to decide who should contest from Channapatna. He, however, pointed out that DK Suresh who lost from Bengaluru Rural constituency as the Congress candidate had thought that he was invincible.

Kumaraswamy questions Shivakumar

Speaking to reporters in New Delhi, Kumaraswamy, whose resignation as MLA is necessitating the Channapatna by-polls, said Shivakumar was showing affection for Channapatna now but had not visited the place in the past one-and-a-half years.

It’s been more than a year since Shivakumar became the deputy chief minister; the person who had never been to Channapatna all these days is showing his affection for that constituency and he is talking about it, he said.

“Who had stopped him from developing Channapatna till now? What was his brother’s (DK Suresh) contribution to Channapatna?” he asked.

On 19 June, Shivakumar paid obeisance to Lord Hanuman and blew the bugle of the election campaign in Channapatna.

His statement that a new chapter in my political career would start from Channapatna made people speculate that he would contest from Channapatna.

It was perceived in the political circles that after winning from Channapatna, Shivakumar would resign from the Kanakapura constituency creating a vacancy for his brother Suresh to contest and win the polls.

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What he said earlier

“Channapatna was also part of Sathanur earlier (the erstwhile segment represented by Shivakumar). I love Channapatna, I want to help Channapatna. I want to change Channapatna,” Shivakumar had said on Wednesday.

Asked whether his brother and former MP DK Suresh will be contesting from Channapatna, he said, “That is not decided. More or less, I’m asking the votes for myself.”

Both Channapatna and Kanakapura are part of the Vokkaliga-dominated Ramanagara district, which comes under the Bangalore Rural Lok Sabha segment.

This was from where Kumaraswamy’s brother-in-law and eminent cardiologist CN Manjunath won as a BJP candidate as part of the arrangement between alliance partners BJP and JD(S), by defeating Suresh.

BJP MLC CP Yogeeshwara is said to be one of the probable candidates for the Channapatna by-poll from the BJP-JD(S) alliance.

Kumaraswamy’s actor-turned-politician son Nikhil Kumaraswamy’s name is also doing the rounds. Nikhil had lost the 2023 Assembly polls from neighbouring Ramanagara.

Kumaraswamy of JD(S) had won Channapatna in 2018 and 2023. Before that Yogeeshwara had represented the seat from BJP and Samajwadi Party. He had earlier also represented the seat both as an independent and from the Congress party.

Shivakumar has been representing the Kanakapura segment since 2008.

(With PTI inputs)

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