Janata Dal (Secular) leader HD Deve Gowda will contest the upcoming Rajya Sabha elections from Karnataka. He will file his nominations on Tuesday, his son and former Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy said on Monday.
Kumaraswamy said his father made his decision after Congress President Sonia Gandhi and several national leaders and party legislators requested him to contest. Gandhi has assured him of the Congress’ full support and surplus votes, reported News18. In January, Gowda had said that he was not interested in going to the Rajya Sabha.
Meanwhile, the Bharatiya Janata Party on Monday announced Iranna Kadadi and Ashok Gasti as party candidates for two seats.
Elections to four Rajya Sabha seats from Karnataka is slated for June 19. The term of two Congress members BK Hariprasad and MV Rajeev Gowda, Bharatiya Janata Party member Prabhakar Kore and Janata Dal (Secular) member Kupendra Reddy will end on June 25.
The Congress has already nominated former Union minister Mallikarjun Kharge as a candidate for the biennial elections to the Rajya Sabha from Karnataka. The Congress, with 68 MLAs in the Assembly, can win one of the four seats easily on its own. The minimum first preference votes required to win for each candidate is 44. With 34 MLAs, the JDS will need support from the Congress.
Gowda had lost the 2019 Lok Sabha elections from Tumkur by a margin of 13,000 votes. He was briefly in the Rajya Sabha for two years when he was made the prime minister in 1996. Till date, he has won seven Assembly elections and six Lok Sabha elections in the last 58 years.