JD(S) candidate ends 51-year Congress rule

Yadgir: JD(S) nominee in Gurmitkal constituency Naganagowda Kandakur has put an end to the 51-year rule of the Congress in the constituency by winning in the polls. The Congress has been in power in the constituency from 1967. In the first election held in 1962, Independent candidate Vidyadhar Guruji won the seat against the Congress candidate Mallappa Kollur. But in 1967, it was won by the party candidate N. Yankappa.

Mallikarjun Kharge contested from the constituency in his maiden election in 1972 and won by a margin of 9440 votes, against an Independent candidate. From thereon, Kharge won continuously eight times from 1972 to 2004. He later moved to Chittapur in Kalaburagi district. In his 36 year rule in Gurmitkal, the Congress party developed tremendously and Kharge also emerged as one of the strongest leaders in the party.

After Kharge, Baburao Chinchansur became MLA twice and continued the Congress rule from 2008 to 2018. However, this time voters chose to support the JD(S). Votes from the Kabbaliga, Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, who are Congress loyalists, went to the JD(S). Kandakur had evoked sympathy among the people by stating the fact that he had defeated twice in the constituency, especially in 2013 when he lost by a thin margin of 1650 votes. Moreover, there was discontent among the people since Chinchanssur had allegedly neglected the drinking water crisis in the constituency. All these factors worked in favour of Kandakur, granting him success and the end of a half-decade Congress rule in Gurmitkal.

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