Obituary: Anand Mamani, gentleman politician, passes away at 56

ByMuralidhara Khajane

Published Oct 23, 2022 | 2:10 PMUpdatedOct 23, 2022 | 2:10 PM

Anand Mamani with Yeddiyurappa

BJP legislator from Saundatti Yellamma constituency and Deputy Speaker of the Karnataka Assembly, Anand Mamani, 56, passed away late on Saturday, 22 October, after battling for life for more than a month. He was reportedly suffering from cancer of the esophagus.

His untimely death has created a kind of vacuum in the Belagavi district, which is recovering from another untimely death, that of Umesh Katti, who was a minister in the Basavaraj Bommai Cabinet, in September.

Family sources said Anand Mamani, a diabetes patient with a liver infection, was admitted to a private hospital in Bengaluru when he complained of abdominal pain in early August. Mamani was later flown to Chennai for a brief treatment and brought back to Bengaluru in September.

He had been in a coma for the past few days and breathed his last at the hospital.

Anand Mamani’s mortal remains will be taken to his hometown, Saundatti, from Bengaluru, and will be kept for public viewing at the tahsildar’s office for a few hours. His last rites will be conducted at his family farmhouse on Yadaravi Road near Saundatti.

Chief Minister Bommai and his Cabinet colleagues are expected to visit Saundatti.

An event to be held in Aland as part of the ongoing Jana Sankalpa Yatra, the BJP’s outreach programme ahead of the Assembly elections, has been cancelled.

Long stint in BJP

Anand Mamani, who joined the BJP in 2008, represented the Saundatti Yellamma constituency for three terms.

He was elected as the 24th Deputy Speaker of the Legislative Assembly in March 2020. BJP fielded Anand Mamani for the post that fell vacant following the resignation of M Krishna Reddy of the Janata Dal (Secular), who quit following a no-confidence motion that was slated to be moved against him.

Interestingly, current Home Minister Araga Jnanendra was also in the race at that time. However, the BJP opted for Anand Mamani, because of his loyalty to the party,

It is significant that Anand Mamani’s father, Chandrashekara Mallikarjuna Mamani, also served as Deputy Speaker during the tenure of JH Patel in 1996.

Chandrashekara Mamani was a four-time MLA, having once won as an independent candidate and the rest of the times as a member of the Janata Parivar.

His cousin, Vishwanath alias Rajanna Mamani, who represented the Saundatti constituency in 2004 defeating Congress candidate Subhash Koujalagi, had died of cancer.

Saundatti stronghold

Rangaraj, a close associate of Anand’s father Chandrashekara Mamani attributed the family’s hold on the constituency to the development works done in Saundatti.

“The Ring Road that facilitates easy access to Saundatti Yellamma temple, development works, and irrigation facility created for 27 villages under the Government of India irrigation programme” are the reasons for the family’s electoral victories in the constituency, Rangaraj told South First.

Chandranna MR, a native of Saundatti who was closely associated with Anand, remembers the MLA as a kind-hearted person, who would help the people of the constituency.

“He was a nice, gentlemen politician”, he said.

Anand Mamani hailed from a reputed and politically powerful Lingayat family whose members have been elected a total of eight times from the Saundatti and Parasgad Assembly constituencies.

Anand Mamani, who was basically an agriculturalist, was involved in cotton trading. After completing his studies at SK Composite College in Saundatti, he began assisting his father Chandrashekara Mamani in politics.

According to sources he was an aspirant for a Cabinet berth, but party leaders convinced him to occupy the Deputy Speaker’s chair.

Prime Minister Modi condoles death

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday condoled the death of Anand Mamani and said he was a formidable leader who worked extensively for social empowerment.

“Pained by the passing away of Shri Anand Mamani, the Deputy Speaker of the Karnataka Assembly. He was a formidable leader who worked extensively for social empowerment. He also worked to strengthen BJP across Karnataka. Condolences to his family and supporters. Om Shanti,” Modi said in a tweet.