BENGALURU: The JDS, which lost three seats after its MLAs resigned a few months ago, is now confident of winning more than what it lost. For the party, the bypolls are a chance to teach the rebels a lesson and also retain their seats in Old Mysuru region, to prove its supremacy.
Three MLAs, including Vishwanath (Hunsur), Gopalaiah (Mahalakshmi Layout) and Narayana Gowda (KR Pete) resigned and are now contesting on the BJP ticket. JDS had fielded candidates in 14 constituencies and two candidates withdrew their nominations. Though JDS has fielded candidates in 12 assembly constituencies, leaders are focusing on seven seats, including Hunsur, KR Pete, Bengaluru (excluding KR Puram), Chikkaballapura and Gokak. But it does not have a hold in the remaining constituencies. It also has a few star campaigners, including former PM HD Deve Gowda and former CM HD Kumaraswamy.
Senior leader and former minister Bandeppa Kashempur told TNIE, “We are definitely going to win the seats we lost. The bypolls will also teach a lesson to MLAs who left their party and jumped to another in the middle of the term. All disqualified MLAs who are contesting will lose. This should also be a warning to people who want to resign and contest.’’
Unlike the BJP and Congress, JDS did not campaign in all the constituencies. “We know our strengths and weaknesses. Instead of campaigning everywhere, we choose where we have a fair chance. We will win Hunsur, KR Pete, Yeshwanthpur and Gokak, and have a good chance in Chikkaballapur. In Mahalakshmi Layout, Gopalaiah has a negative image and our candidate Tanveer in Shivajinagar has a clean reputation,’’ JDS sources said.
Party leaders are giving different statements everyday —there is speculation of an alliance with Congress, and also with BJP. Or JDS could end up being kingmaker.