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Friday, January 27 2023

BJP set to retain Malleswaram in 2018

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Bengaluru: Malleswaram Assembly constituency, once known as a Tamil-Kannada-Konkani Brahmin stronghold that favoured the then Janata Party and later Janata Dal (Secular), has transformed into a cosmopolitan suburb.

Two decades ago, Malleswaram was just a suburb and its residents were envied by denizens of other areas for its well-planned and beautiful boulevards named after particular flowers and trees (Mallige, Sampige, Margosa and others). The advantage of this assembly constituency is majority of the voters are literates. It will be difficult for politicians or political parties to make false and tall promises during the election time and forget as soon as elections are held.

The residents love greenery and clean environment. They are ever ready to stage protest against the wrong decision of the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) or the state government. For example, the residents have approached the court to wage a legal battle against the state government for allocating a forest land adjacent to Sankey Tank to a private builder. The residents also protested against the BBMP’s decision to widen the Sankey Road by cutting a number of trees.

Politically, Malleswaram was always known as the thinking man’s constituency and the popular politicians were P Ramdev of the Janata family or M S Krishnan of the CPI.

The Janata Party, and its later avatar, the Janata Dal held the seat for five terms till 1999, when the Congress wrested it and held it for two terms. In the assembly elections held between 1957 and 2013, Congress managed to win this seat only twice–1999 and 2004. Its candidate M R Seetharam defeated M Raghupathy of Janata Dal (United) in 1999 by a margin of 18,040 votes and Dr. Aswath Narayan C N (BJP) by a margin of 9,777 votes in 2004.

However, Dr. Aswath Narayan won this seat by defeating Congress candidate Seetharam by a margin of 8,183 votes in 2008. Though it is not known why Seetharam was denied ticket in the elections held in 2013, BJP candidate Dr. Ashwath Narayana romped home with a margin of 21,066 votes against Congress candidate B K Shivaram in 2013.

“It is because Dr. Aswath Narayan is considered as a mass leader. He has been participating in a number of public functions and has been working hard to upgrade the existing infrastructure,’’ opines Balasubramaniam S, a resident of Malleswaram.

The elections held to the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) Council in 2015, the incumbent MLA from Malleswaram has proved his popularity among the voters by ensuring the success of BJP candidates in five among the seven wards. Congress candidates succeeded in winning from Subramanyanagar and Gayathri Nagar wards while BJP candidates won from Aramane, Mathikere, Malleswaram, Rajamahal Guttahalli and Kadumalleswara wards.

The residents, especially those who visit Sankey Tank for a stroll in the morning and evening, want the MLA to press the government to cancel the allocation of forest land adjacent to it to a private builder. They want the elected representative to ensure greenery in the vicinity.

“The builder wants to construct a huge residential and commercial complex by chopping off hundreds of trees. Cutting of trees will deprive shelter to thousands of birds,’’ says Rajasekhar R, a resident.

Hundreds of vendors who were relocated want the elected representative to compel the contractor to expedite the construction work at Malleswaram flower, fruit and vegetable market. The 50-year-old market was demolished a few years ago to make way for multi-storied complex.

“The work is progressing at a snail’s pace. We want the construction work to be expedited since many of us are finding it difficult to continue our business from the temporary sheds allotted by the BBMP,’’ said Venkataswamy, a vendor.

All in all, Dr. Aswath Narayan will have no difficulty in retaining the seat if Congress fails to field a formidable candidate against him in the Assembly elections scheduled to be held in April or May 2018.

BJP set to retain Malleswaram in 2018
BJP set to retain Malleswaram in 2018
BJP set to retain Malleswaram in 2018
BJP set to retain Malleswaram in 2018
BJP set to retain Malleswaram in 2018
BJP set to retain Malleswaram in 2018
BJP set to retain Malleswaram in 2018
BJP set to retain Malleswaram in 2018

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