In an overnight development, both the BJP and the Congress made some surprising announcements for the upcoming Lok Sabha election.
In Bangalore South, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) named 28-year-old Tejasvi Surya, an advocate and general secretary of the party’s state youth wing, as its candidate. And the Congress picked up Karnataka minister Krishna Byre Gowda as its candidate for Bangalore North. Byre Gowda will contest against BJP’s DV Sadananda Gowda.
Tejaswini Ananth Kumar, wife of late union minister Ananth Kumar, started campaigning on BJP’s behalf and expected the party to give her the ticket. But the party choose the young contestant in last-minute trouncing speculations. The seat held by BJP since 1991, sent Ananth Kumar to Lok Sabha for six times in a row until his death.
Tejasvi, a qualified legal professional from Bangalore Institute of Legal Studies, identified himself with the Rashtriya Swayam Sevak wing and Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), before moving into the BJP Yuva morcha.
If elected, Tejasvi will be one of the youngest members of parliament. In the last Lok Sabha election, Dushyant Chautala from Haryana became the youngest MP at 26. Tejasvi will face party veteran and Rajya Sabha MP BK Hariprasad from Congress.
In Bangalore North, the seat held by BJP for the last three terms, will see a close battle between two vokkaliga leaders. Byre Gowda fought the Lok Sabha election in 2009 against Ananth Kumar in Bangalore South, but lost by a margin of 37,612 votes.
While the seat was initially given to JD(S) as per the coalition agreement, the party returned the seat as it did not find a suitable candidate. The Congress was deliberating to field sitting MP from Tumakuru, Muddahanumegowda, who turned a rebel against former Prime Minister Deve Gowda.
In Bangalore North, seven of the eight assembly segments are held by the JD(S) and the Congress. The coalition partners thought to capitalise on this and work towards defeating the BJP.
And the Bangalore Central constituency will see a three way battle between Rizwan Arshad from Congress, PC Mohan from the BJP and independent candidate actor Prakash Raj. While the anti-BJP votes may get divided between Rizwan and Prakash Raj, BJP is hopeful of retaining the seat with strong support from its cadres. Mohan had defeated Rizwan in the previous election by a margin of about 1.4 lakh votes.