Hassan: She is making her debut in electoral politics and on the face of it the Halekote Zilla Panchayat seat is a safe one for the Janata Dal (S). But will it be a cakewalk for Ms Bhavani, the daughter-in-law of former PM, H.D. Deve Gowda?
The Janata parivar has won from Halekote since 1987, defeating the Congress in every election here over the last few decades. In fact it was Ms Bhavani’s husband, H.D. Revanna, who first won from Halekote , setting off a trail of wins by his partymen. The last election also saw the JD(S) bag the seat.
Halekote voters have always backed the Janata parivar as they are part of the Holenarsipur assembly constituency , which Mr Deve Gowda has nurtured for years, explains a JDS leader of Halekote, Jayaram. “The people here have a lot of respect for Mr Gowda and vote for his party every time as he has done a great deal to develop the area and also because he and his family have always maintained a close relationship with them,” he adds.
Such is the faith of Halekote voters in the Janata parivar that Mr Deve Gowda had a clear lead in the ZP area even in 1989 when he lost the Holenarsipur assembly seat to Mr Puttaswamy Gowda of the Congress. They showed similar loyalty to Mr Revanna when he too lost the election to the Congress in Holenarsipur in 1999.
Mr Jayaram feels Halekote voters are unlikely to desert the party now that Mr Revanna’ s wife and the JDS supremo’s daughter-in-law is in the fray. “They will elect her by a huge margin,” he asserts.
But Congress candidate, Sunil. isn’t ready to throw in the towel yet, claiming that voters of Halekote are fed up with the Gowda family....