BENGALURU: Govindarajnagara Assembly constituency in west Bengaluru is a picture of contrasts. Some areas are clean, but others are dirty; while population has spiked in some wards, it has slowed in others.
Named after M Govindraj, an activist who was run over by a train during a pro-Kannada rail roko protest in 1970, the constituency seems to be mix of developed and under-developed wards. Thus issues and challenges vary from one place to other.
Father-Son MLAs Vs Former Minister
The BBMP election is a prestigious battle for the father-son duo of Congress MLAs, Krishnappa and Priya Krishna, and former BJP minister V Somanna. The constituency, which was once a safe zone for Somanna, has been represented by Priya Krishna for the past two terms. Of the nine wards here, eight are represented by BJP and one by JD(S). All the BJP councillors were supporters of Somanna but some of them have not been able to contest due to the change in reservation system.
Former mayor Shanthakumari, who represented Mudalpalya for three terms, too cannot contest this time from her ward for this reason. Umesh Shetty and Mohan Kumar, who were councillors for Nagarbhavi and Govindarajnagara, have swapped their wards.
The nine wards of the constituency, where a large number of Vokkaligas and a considerable number of Brahmins live, spread from the city centre to the Outer Ring Road. Prasanna Theatre, Maruthi Mandir (known as Kothi Bande) and Rajajinagar industrial area are some of the landmarks of this constituency. Outer Ring Road, Mysuru Road and Chord Road are the major roads that cross this constituency.
As in much of Bengaluru, garbage disposal is the major concern of residents. Though some roads are kept clean, others have mounds of garbage, especially on the streets of Marenhalli, Agrahara Dasarahalli and Nayandahalli. Residents say pourakarmikas do not come on time and in some areas, come only once in three days. They also complain that pourakarmikas do not come to interior roads. The drains are not kept clean, making them breeding grounds for mosquitoes, they say.
More than Rs 375 crore has been allotted for the nine wards here in the last five years. While some wards received more than Rs 50 crore, some got just Rs 22 crore. This is one of the reasons for the uneven development across the constituency.
Population growth in the wards too indicates how contrasting they are. Wards like Nayandahalli, Mudalapalya and Nagarbhavi have recorded a population growth of 98.1, 78.6 and 76.5 per cent in the last decade; but in Govindarajnagara and Agrahara Dasarahalli it is just 4.3 per cent. Dr Rajkumar ward has had a negative growth of 2.3 per cent.
ward by ward: the major party candidates and the problems voters think their representative needs to address