Karnataka independent MLA extends support to Congress

Independent MLA Sharath Bachegowda from Hosakote Assembly segment in Bengaluru Rural district has extended support to the opposition Congress in Karnataka, the party said on Thursday.

“Sharath met our party’s state unit president D.K. Shivakumar and extended his support to the Congress as its associate member for the development of his constituency and its people,” the official told IANS here.

Incidentally, Sharath, 37, is the son of BJP Lok Sabha member B.N. Bachegowda from Chikkaballapur, about 70 kms northeast of Bengaluru.

Sharath won from Hosakote in the December 5, 2019 bye-election, defeating former Congress minister M.T.B. Nagaraj as an independent after the ruling BJP denied him a ticket to contest.

Nagaraj, however, was made Excise Minister on January 13 after he defected to the BJP and got elected unopposed to the state Legislative Council as MLC in June 2020 biennial elections.

“I will remain an independent in the Assembly but extend outside support to Congress on various issues, including its demand for repeal of the farm laws by the central and state governments,” Sharath said after giving his letter of support to Shivakumar in the presence of senior Congress leader and former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah.

Sharath blamed the BJP government for lack of development in his constituency, as funds have not been released amid the Covid pandemic.

Ironically, Sharath, who was BJP’s Yuva Morcha (youth wing) secretary, was expelled from the BJP when he rebelled against it for denying him a party ticket to contest the 2019 December bypolls against Nagaraj to whom he had lost in the May 2018 Assembly election as a BJP candidate.

B.N. Bachegowda represented the Hoskote Assembly seat when he was in the JD-U and the BJP later.