Venkatesh Naik was a gentleman-politician, known for his simplicity, affable manner

DECCAN CHRONICLE
Published Aug 25, 2015, 9:52 am IST
Updated Mar 28, 2019, 2:16 am IST
He is survived by his wife Savitramma, three daughters and two sons including Raichur Lok Sabha Member B V Naik
People participate in the funeral procession of MLA A. Venkatesh Naik (inset) in Raichur on Monday (Photo: KPN)
 People participate in the funeral procession of MLA A. Venkatesh Naik (inset) in Raichur on Monday (Photo: KPN)

RAICHUR: Senior Congress leader and sitting MLA of Deodurga Arakere Venkatesh Naik who died in a freak railway accident near Madaksira railway gate in Ananthpur district while travelling to Raichur from Bengaluru in the Nanded Express, belonged to a rare breed of gentleman politician. He is survived by his wife Savitramma, three daughters and two sons including Raichur Lok Sabha Member B V Naik.

Mr Naik rose virtually from ‘Halli to Delhi’ (village to capital). Born on June 6, 1936 at Arakere village in Deodurga taluk, Mr. Naik entered politics through the Congress party in 1968 through the local body elections. He was the president of Arikera gram panchayat in Deodurga taluk for ten years opposed. He was the member of the Taluk Development Board and also the Raichur APMC from 1982 to 1991. He had also been elected member of the Raichur Zilla Panchayat from 1986 to 1991 before entering national politics.

 

Mr Naik had served Devadurga taluk Congress Committee president for two terms and Raichur District Congress Committee for one term. He was elected to Lok Sabha for the first timse from Raichur Lok Sabha constituency in 1991.

Though he lost the constituency to Raja Rangappa Naik of Janata Dal in 1996 Lok Sabha polls, it was a temporary defeat for him. Because he avenged the defeat in 1998 and repeated the performance in 1999 and 2004.

In a way Mr Naik suffered a political setback when he lost against his grandson Shivangouda Naik, whom he had groomed initially, in the 2008 Assembly election while being a Lok Sabha member. Mr Naik suffered further humiliation when his son B V. Naik lost against Mr Shivangouda Naik in the byelection to Deoduraga assembly constituency in 2008. That the defeats at the hands of his grandson had severely dented him image and cost him dearly was evident from the denial of Raichur Lok Sabha ticket to him by the party in 2009. Mr Sanna Fakirappa of BJP defeated Raja Venkatappa Naik who was fielded as the Congress candidate in the election.

 

But in 2013, in a bitter electoral battle in the Assembly polls, Mr. Naik avenged the humiliation inflicted on him by defeating his grandson K. Shivanagowda Naik who contested from Bharatiya Janata Party at Devadurga constituency by a margin of 3700 votes. Mr Naik had also played a pivotal role in earning a thin-margin victory for his son and Congress candidate B.V. Naik against Shivangouda Naik in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls in Raichur constituency.

“In the death of Mr Naik the people have lost of rare politician who was known for his simplicity, gentleness and humility. Though Mr Naik was in power for a long time and occupied various posts, at no point of time did he behave with arrogance with people and party workers. His message to the people was that the responsibility of electing good or bad politician rested with them and they should conscientiously exercise their power,” said Raichur District Congress Committee president Vasanthkumar.

 

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Location: Karnataka




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