Bengaluru: Former Prime Minister and JD(S) national president HD Deve Gowda will contest from the Bengaluru North Lok Sabha seat in the upcoming general elections.

According to JD(S) MLC Sharavana, who  is a close confidante of 85-year-old Deve Gowda and his son, Karnataka chief minister HD Kumaraswamy, said since the Bengaluru North constituency has more Vokkaliga voters, the party will defeat the BJP. Currently, the seat is held by Union minister DV Sadananda Gowda.

Sharavana told MyNation, "The JD(S) has its strength in this Lok Sabha seat. We have our MLAs in Mahalakshmipuram and Dasarahalli Assembly consitutencies. We have a good number of Vokkaliga voters in Yeshwantpura. The local leaders in these Assembly segments will be appraised shortly about HD Deve Gowda contesting from here.”

Mahalakshmipuram MLA Gopalaiah also echoed similar sentiments and said, “The Bengaluru North constituency has about 24 lakh voters and out of which Vokkaligas comprise over 7.5 lakh and Muslims are 5 lakh. The presence of Vokkaligas in Mahalakshmipuram, Dasarahalli, Malleshwaram, Hebbala, Yeshwanthpura and Byatrayanpura is enough to send sitting MP DV Sadananda Gowda packing.”

"A combination of Vokkaligas and Muslims, the resentment by the HAL and BEML employees against the Central government for neglecting public sector units is enough for us to defeat the BJP," opined Gopalaiah.

However, the Congress camp expressed doubt over this development of Deve Gowda contesting from Bengaluru North. Deve Gowda is currently Hassan MP.

Karnataka Congress spokesperson Kengal Renu said, "Hassan is their homeland and why will they leave and come to Bengaluru. Earlier, HD Deve Gowda committed a mistake of contesting from Kanakpura as MLA and he lost."

BJP confident of retaining  Bengaluru North

The BJP, which holds all the MP seats in Bengaluru, feels that the voters in Bengaluru South, North and Central will always bless them.

"Bengaluru is our base and strength.  The JD(S) has no base in Bengaluru. BJP will defeat HD Deve Gowda if he contests," Karnataka BJP spokesperson Ashwathnarayana expressed confidence.

In 2014, Sadananda Gowda polled 718,326 votes while the Congress candidate C Narayan Swamy got 488,562. The JD(S) candidate Abdul Azeem who is now a BJP MLC got 92,681 votes. The Aam Admi Party (AAP) candidate Prof Babu Mathew managed 28,107 votes.