The recently concluded Karnataka Assembly elections have thrown up a few surprises, not the least of which is the victory of Pradeep Eshwar over K. Sudhakar, the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) campaign committee chairman and a close aide of the outgoing Chief Minister, Basavaraj Bommai. Eshwar, a 38-year-old coaching institute owner from Chikkaballapur district, defeated Sudhakar by 10,642 votes to win the Chikkaballapur seat on a Congress ticket.
The victory of Pradeep Eshwar has stunned political observers, as he was a relative unknown in political circles until recently. However, his rise to prominence has been meteoric, and his victory has been attributed to his fiery speeches and his popularity on social media. Eshwar runs a coaching institute that provides coaching for entrance examinations to medical and other competitive courses. Eshwar’s wife is also a teacher at the institute.
The victory of Pradeep Eshwar over K. Sudhakar is all the more surprising given the fact that Sudhakar was considered to be one of the most important BJP leaders in the state. He was the party’s campaign committee chairman and was widely regarded as a close aide of the outgoing Chief Minister, Basavaraj Bommai. Sudhakar’s defeat is seen as a major setback for the BJP, which had been hoping to make significant gains in the state.
Interestingly, it has been reported by journalist DP Satish that the seat was first offered to the son of former Karnataka Minister Raksha Ramaiah. However, Ramaiah declined the offer and instead suggested that Pradeep Eshwar be given the ticket, as he was more likely to win due to his popularity.
Furthermore, there are reports that Raksha Ramaiah may be eyeing to contest the Lok Sabha elections from the Chikkaballapur seat in 2024. This could make the constituency a focal point of political activity in the coming years.
Sudhakar, who was born on May 8, 1970, in Bengaluru, is a medical doctor by profession. He was associated with the Congress party for many years before defecting to the BJP in 2019. Sudhakar began his political career as a member of the Youth Congress and was elected as a Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA) from the Chikkaballapur constituency on a Congress ticket in the 2013 Karnataka Legislative Assembly elections. He was subsequently made a minister in the Siddaramaiah-led government in the state.
Sudhakar left the Congress party in July 2019 along with sixteen other MLAs and joined the BJP. The move was seen as a major blow to the Congress party, which was then in power in the state. Sudhakar’s defection was also seen as a major coup for the BJP, as he was regarded as a prominent OBC leader in the state.
The victory of Pradeep Eshwar over K. Sudhakar has been attributed to a number of factors. One of the most important factors is Eshwar’s popularity on social media. Eshwar’s fiery speeches and his ability to connect with voters on a personal level have made him a social media sensation. His campaign was largely based on his videos and speeches, and he approached voters stating he did not have money to afford such massive campaigns.
Another factor that worked in Eshwar’s favor was his OBC identity. Eshwar was able to connect with voters from his community, who saw him as a representative of their interests. This helped him win over a significant number of voters in the Chikkaballapur constituency.
The victory of Pradeep Eshwar over K. Sudhakar is a significant development in the political landscape of Karnataka. It is seen as a major setback for the BJP, which was hoping to make significant gains in the state. The victory of Eshwar is also seen as a boost for the Congress party,