Mangaluru, Jan 01, 2016: K. Jayaprakash Hegde, Independent candidate who was defeated in the Legislative Council election from the local bodies Constituency in Udupi-Dakshina Kannada, on Dec 31, Thursday said that he plans to contest as an Independent candidate in the next Legislative Assembly elections from Udupi district.
Addressing media here, Hegde said that he was planning to file nomination papers from Udupi, Byndoor, or Kaup Assembly constituencies. He did not rule out the Kundapur Assembly constituency either. “ I will consult with my supporters on my next move. It will also depend on the situation,” he said.
Hegde said that he would remain active in politics. He would concentrate on developing a second line of leadership among his supporters. Hegde would leave it to his supporters on who they wanted to support in the forthcoming zilla and taluk panchayat elections.
“It will be difficult for me to campaign once again so soon after the Legislative Council polls. But if some supporters decide to contest, I will support them,” he said. Hegde alleged that “money power” and “religious swearing of voters” by major political parties had marred his chances in the Council polls. Some political parties had made voters to “swear on the coconut” and given “prasada” to vote for them.
While he did not believe in such things, there were some gram panchayat members, who took it seriously. The voters were taken in groups to vote in a bid to create fear in them. They were also misled and told that their voting pattern could be traced. All these played on the minds of the voters, he said.
Hegde said that the entire Congress leadership right from Oscar Fernandes to MLAs put their entire strength just to ensure his defeat. “If they had put in the same efforts, the Congress would have put a better show in the Udupi-Chikkamagaluru parliamentary seat in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls,” he said.
“But my contesting the Legislative Council polls forced the Congress party leaders to go and contact the party workers. They had to renew and recharge their strategies. This is no mean achievement,” Hegde said.