Karnataka council deputy chairman SL Dharme Gowda found dead near railway track
The body of Karnataka Legislative Council deputy chairman S L Dharme Gowda was recovered from a railway track at Gunasagar village of Kadur Taluk in Chikmagalur district of the state, said police on Tuesday.
Gowda, say police, is suspected to have died by suicide. The police are examining an alleged death note found near his body.
According to police sources, Gowda had asked his official gunman and escort to leave him alone on Monday evening. He had left his home in Shakarayapatna in an old personal Santro car with his driver and came to Gunasagar at around 6 pm. He then asked his driver to leave him as he had to meet someone.
His last call is said to have made enquiries about train timings from a friend in Kadur. When Gowda did not return home even late at night, his family is said to have alerted authorities who mounted a search. Based on cell signals, they located his body on the Mankenahalli railway track. The head was separated from the body.
His body has been sent for autopsy to Shivamogga and according to his brother Bhoje Gowda the last rites would be held at the Madagadakere farmhouse that the family owns in Shakaryapatna.
The JD(S) MLC is said to have been distressed over the way he was treated by some members during chaos in the council.
During the one day proceeding of the council, Gowda was pushed and shoved by angry Congress members who said that only the Chairman can preside over the House.
CM Yediyurappa, leader of opposition in assembly Siddaramiah, KPCC President D K Shivakumar, JDS Chief Deve Gowda and Kumaraswamy apart from various other political leaders have expressed shock and grief at the death of Gowda.
“It is shocking to learn the news of Deputy Speaker of State Legislative Council and JDS leader SL Dharmegowda’s suicide. He was a calm and decent man. This is a loss of the state,” news agency ANI quoted HD Deve Gowda, former PM and JDS leader, as saying.
A close associate of JDS leader HD Kumaraswamy, Gowda hailed from an influential political family. His father SR Lakshmaiah was a three-time MLA from Birur assembly constituency and Gowda himself had once been elected from there in 2004. Gowda’s brother SL Bhoje Gowda is also an MLC.