Soumya Reddy defeats BJP’s B.N. Prahlad Babu by 2,889 votes.
Bengaluru: In another setback for the BJP in the city, Ms Soumya Reddy of the Congress won from the Jayanagar Assembly constituency, defeating its opponent, B.N. Prahlad Babu by a margin of 2,889 votes on Wednesday.
In a close contest, Ms Reddy, daughter of former minister, Ramalinga Reddy, won 54,457 votes as against Mr Babu’s 51,568. The Congress win is a blow for the BJP as it had hoped to retain Jayanagar banking on the sympathy factor following the sudden death of its MLA from the constituency, B.N. Vijaykumar in the run-up to the assembly poll, by fielding his brother, Prahlad Babu in his place.
For the Congress the win is significant as its tally has risen to 79 in the 222- strong Assembly and it now has 15 of the 28 seats in Bengaluru city and Bengaluru rural district in its kitty. One seat in the Assembly fell vacant recently due to the death of Congress MLA, Siddu Nyamagouda in a road accident while CM Kumaraswamy has vacated Ramanagara, one of the two seats he won.
The win is also significant for Ms Reddy, a debutante, as she is only the seventh woman from Bengaluru to enter the Vidhana Soudha. Senior BJP leader, Shobha Karandlaje, who now represents Udupi-Chikmagalur in the Lok Sabha, had won from Yeshwantpur in the 2008 Assembly poll.
The Congress was clearly helped by JD(S) candidate, Kale Gowda withdrawing from the fray at the eleventh hour on the directions of his party supremo, H.D. Deve Gowda, who reportedly acted on the request of Mr Ramalinga Reddy to avoid a split in the party’s vote share. This is the second upset in the city for the BJP in recent weeks as it lost from Rajarajeshwari Nagar as well, where the poll was postponed following the discovery of thousands of fake voter IDs in an apartment in Jalahalli ahead of the May 12 Assembly poll.
Reacting to the mandate, defeated BJP candidate B. N Prahlad Babu, said, “Democracy has its ups and downs. Setbacks give an opportunity to become stronger. The BJPand I will continue to work for the people of Jayanagar. We will rise again, sooner than most think! Congratulations to the Congress and Ms Sowmya Reddy.” -“Hearty congratulations to @Sowmyareddyr for winning #Jayanagar Assembly elections! A heartfelt thank you goes to the voters who saw the future in @INCKarnataka. With this impactful win, we have now conquered 15 out of 28 Assembly seats in Bengaluru.” Dr G. Parameshwar, PCC President and deputy chief minister said. “Congratulations to @Sowmyareddyr for winning Jayanagar ! Our tally in Bengaluru city is 15 now. Thanks to the Congress party workers for ensuring victory.”