LIVE TV DownloadNews18 App
News18 English
3-min read

Karnataka Assembly Elections 2018: Varuna Seat May Witness Battle Royale Between Siddaramaiah Junior Versus Yeddyurappa’s Son

Varuna may prove to be an exciting battle if the Congress fields Siddaramaiah’s son Yatheendra and the BJP fields Yeddyurappa’s son Vijayendra from this constituency in upcoming Assembly elections.

D P Satish | News18dp_satish

Updated:March 30, 2018, 3:11 PM IST
Karnataka Assembly Elections 2018: Varuna Seat May Witness Battle Royale Between Siddaramaiah Junior Versus Yeddyurappa’s Son
Varuna constituency in Karnataka may witness an electoral battle between Yeddyurappa's son Vijayendra (left) and Siddaramaiah’s son Yatheendra.
Bengaluru: Varuna, in the outskirts of palace city Mysore, is one of the best known Assembly seats in Karnataka, courtesy its incumbent MLA and Chief Minister Siddaramaiah.

Varuna came into existence as an Assembly seat only in 2008 after the delimitation of constituencies. Siddaramaiah, who contested seven elections from Chamundeshwari between 1983 and 2008, shifted to neighbouring Varuna for strategic reasons. He has now decided to field son Yatheendra from there, shifting his own base to Chamundeshwari again.

This semi-urban seat is likely to witness a battle royale this time if BJP’s CM face BS Yeddyurappa’s son Vijayendra takes on Siddaramaiah’s son Yatheendra.

Both Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah are focusing a lot on Mysore, Siddaramaiah’s stronghold in this election. They have already visited Mysore three to four times and seem to have decided to make this election tough for Siddaramaiah in his home turf.

After Siddaramaiah officially declares that he will field Yatheendra from Varuna, the BJP, too, has decided to accept the challenge by fielding a strong candidate. Of Yeddyurappa’s two sons, his elder son BY Raghavendra is a BJP MLA from Shikaripura in Shimoga district. Before that he was MP from Shimoga. Since Yeddyurappa is contesting in the Assembly elections once again, Raghavendra has vacated the seat for his father.

According to family sources, Raghavendra is eyeing neighbouring Ranebennur seat this time. Yeddyurappa’s younger son Vijayendra has been a backroom boy and it will be his first election if the party decides to field him.

On the other hand, Yatheendra, a medical practitioner, was never interested in politics and was unknown even to many of his father’s associates till his elder brother Rakesh died in Belgium in July 2016. Till then, Rakesh was considered Siddaramaiah’s political heir apparent.

Yatheendra has been handling Varuna for the past two years and is familiar with the local voters and issues. Being a local is also helping him. Unlike Yatheendra, Yeddyurappa’s son Vijayendra is an outsider to Mysore politics. Shimoga-born and brought-up Vijayendra has been a resident of Bengaluru for the past 10 years.

However, the local BJP has many reasons to choose Vijayendra as the challenger against the CM son’s in Varuna. The BJP is facing a shortage of winnable candidates in the JD(S) and Congress stronghold of old Mysore region. In 2013 Assembly elections, the BJP was completely routed in these districts, failing to win even a single seat. Yeddyurappa’s personal assistant Kapu Siddalingaswamy had contested against Siddaramaiah from Varuna on KJP ticket in 2013 and lost by over 30,000 votes.

Secondly, Varuna has a sizable Veerashaiva population, who are upset with Siddaramaiah for according minority status to Lingayats. According to locals, there are around 60,000 Veerashaivas, 40,000 Nayaka STs, 15,000 Kurubas, 10,000 Vokkaligas and over 50,000 Dalit voters in Varuna. The BJP hopes that most Veerashaivas would back the party and divide SC/ ST votes.

Siddaramaiah, however, said these communities have voted for him in the past and would continue to do so. “The BJP is good at dividing the people. We won’t do that. They (the communities) voted for me in the past. They will do the same again even if my son contests from there.”

Yeddyurappa is mum on the possibility of his son taking on Siddaramaiah’s son. However, Varuna block BJP has submitted a letter to Amit Shah requesting him to field Vijayendra from the constituency.

Catch the Biggest Newsmakers and the Biggest Newsbreaks on CNN-News18, your favourite English TV news channel. Keep watching CNN-News18 at just 50 Paise per Month. Contact your cable /DTH operator Now!
*Rental / capacity fee of Rs.130/- as charged by cable / DTH operator may apply. **GST extra.

| Edited by: Nitya Thirumalai
Read full article
Next Story
Next Story

Also Watch


Live TV

Countdown To Elections Results
  • 01 d
  • 12 h
  • 38 m
  • 09 s
To Assembly Elections 2018 Results