B Y Vijayendra, Vice-President of the BJP’s state unit, is running for office in the upcoming May 10 Assembly elections in Shikaripura. This is the first time in forty years that the constituency will not be represented by his father and former Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa. Goni Malatesh of the Congress, who lost to Yediyurappa in the previous Assembly election by over 35,000 votes, will also be running. Additionally, S P Nagaraja Gowda, a Congress rebel, is running as an independent candidate.
In 2018, Yediyurappa received 86,983 votes while Malatesh received 51,586 votes. Some believe that Gowda may give Vijayendra a run for his money, as anti-Yeddyurappa family votes may rally behind him. Additionally, the Banjara community, who are reportedly upset with the ruling BJP after it announced internal reservations among SCs and had even stoned Yediyurappa’s Shikaripura residence during a recent protest, may support Gowda.
Despite not receiving an official candidacy from any party, Gowda is optimistic about his chances due to the public’s support. Some speculate that his presence may end up helping Vijayendra instead of the Congress. Malatesh is confident in his ability to win this time around, despite receiving fewer votes than Yediyurappa in the previous election.
Vijayendra and Yediyurappa are both confident in their chances of retaining the seat. Vijayendra is taking the election seriously and touring the constituency repeatedly. This election is important for him as it will shape his future as a leader within the BJP during a generational shift.