Karnataka: Independents may upset Council poll calculations

Jarkiholi is all praise for Mr Koujalgi's involvement in steps for the welfare of graduates and unemployed youth over the last five years.

Bengaluru: The ruling Congress and the BJP may be locked in a close contest in both the north-west graduates’ and teachers’ constituencies , but a few popular independent candidates could upset their calculations in the Legislative Council elections held here on Thursday.

With a majority of the 1.79 lakh voters spread across Belagavi, Bagalkot and Vijayapur districts in the graduates constituency being Lingayats, both parties have fielded candidates from the community. While sitting MLC, Mahantesh Koujalgi of the Congress is hoping to defeat prominent businessman Hanumanth Nirani of the BJP, veteran leader, M B Nadagouda of the f JDU is also a favourite.

Although several BJP leaders rallied behind him in his campaign , Mr Nirani, a first timer, took no chances and worked hard to woo the new voters enrolled in all three districts. Brother of former minister, Murugesh Nirani, he heads the noted Nirani Group of Industries in Bagalkot.

Unlike him, however, Mr Koujalgi , an experienced politician, did not receive the backing he needed from the state’s Congress leadership during his campaign with Chief Minister Siddaramaiah himself abruptly cancelling a party rally organised in Belagavi last week in his support. But to his advantage, all the Jarkiholi brothers stood by him over the last few weeks..

Minister Satish Jarkiholi is all praise for Mr Koujalgi’s involvement in steps for the welfare of graduates and unemployed youth over the last five years.

Guinness book for Horatti if he wins again
Moderate polling was witnessed during elections to the Council from two graduates' and two teachers' constituencies on Thursday. Among the contestants, Mr Basavaraj Horatti of Janata Dal (S), Mr Arun Shahpur of BJP and Mahantesh Shivananda Koujalgi of Congress are seeking re-election. Six-time MLC Basavaraj Horatti would create history if he succeeds in winning from North West Teachers’ constituency this year. While North West Graduates' constituency recorded 48 per cent voting, South Graduates' constituency recorded 44 per cent voting.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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