‘Not interested’: HD Deve Gowda on contesting Rajya Sabha polls
Four Rajya Sabha seats from Karnataka are about to fall vacant in June after Rajeev Gowda and BK Hari Prasad of the Congress, Prabhakar Kore of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and D Kupendra Reddy of the JD(S) retire.Updated: Jan 12, 2020 18:49 IST
Janata Dal (Secular) leader and former prime minister HD Deve Gowda on Sunday dismissed reports that he could contest the elections to the Rajya Sabha, Asian News International reported.
“I’m not interested to go to the Rajya Sabha. My concern is to build and strengthen the party. I had declared earlier that I will not contest elections anymore,” Gowda was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
Four Rajya Sabha seats from Karnataka are about to fall vacant in June after Rajeev Gowda and BK Hari Prasad of the Congress, Prabhakar Kore of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and D Kupendra Reddy of the JD(S) retire.
Senior party functionaries had said earlier in the week that it was an opportunity for Gowda to re-enter Parliament.
The party’s spokesperson Tanveer Ahmed Ullah had said while speaking at the JD(S) national executive meeting recently that they had requested the former PM to contest the polls.
“Getting the additional votes will not be a challenge with him as our candidate. Everybody across the political spectrum respects Deve Gowda ji. Karnataka needs a strong voice at Centre,” Ullah had said.
At the same time, another JD(S) leader, who did not want to be named, said Gowda is reluctant to contest.
He had, however, added that the party and the state need his voice to be heard in Parliament to “protect the interests of Karnataka”.
Gowda left his traditional stronghold of Hassan — from where he was elected five times between 1991 and 2014 — to his grandson Prajwal Revanna in the Lok Sabha elections held last year.
He had contested from the Tumkuru Lok Sabha seat. While Revanna won, Gowda lost to the BJP’s GS Basavaraj by about 13,000 votes.
The BJP won the Lok Sabha polls in the state with a huge margin as it cornered 25 of the 28 seats and one Independent backed by the party also won. The Congress and the JD(S) were reduced to a seat each.