Bengaluru: With many instances of Speaker of the Karnataka Assembly losing the Assembly polls, many newly elected senior Congress MLAs, who are offered the post, are unwilling to take up the post out of apprehension that their political career would come to an end.
In the past, many Speakers, who contested the polls, have lost and Vishweshwara Hegde Kageri of the BJP is the last one to be added to the list. Kageri, who remained undefeated all these years, lost his Sirsi Assembly seat to Congress candidate in the just held polls.
Congress leaders like H.K. Patil, B.R. Patil, T.B. Jayachandra, R.V. Deshpande and Y.N. Gopalakrishna, who are the senior-most among the newly elected MLAs, are refusing to accept the Assembly Speaker’s post, which the party has offered them. However, after much persuasion by the Congress High Command, R.V. Deshpande, who was elected from Haliyal, agreed to function as the Protem Speaker until the new Speaker is elected on May 24, the last day of the first Session of the new Assembly.
The Karnataka Assembly has a history of Speakers losing the Assembly polls, especially since 2004: K.R. Pet JD(S) MLA Krishna, who functioned as the Speaker from 2004 to 2008, lost from K.R. Pet segment in the 2008 Assembly polls and with it, his political career came to an end.
Kagodu Thimmappa of the Congress, who was the Speaker in the Congress Government that was formed in 2013, lost the polls from Sagar in the 2018 polls and since then his political career seems to have come to an end.
Similarly, K.B. Koliwad of the Congress, who functioned as Speaker from 2016 to 2018, lost the polls from his home Constituency Ranebennur in 2018 Assembly polls. Koliwad also lost the Ranebennur by-polls held in 2019.
Another Senior Congress leader Ramesh Kumar, who functioned as Speaker in JD(S)-Congress Government formed in 2018, also lost the just held Assembly polls from his home Constituency Srinivaspur in Kolar district.
In yet another instance, K.G. Bopaiah of the BJP, who was the Speaker in the first BJP Government, too lost the May 10 polls from Virajpet Constituency.
With such a long list of Speakers from all the major parties losing Assembly polls, the Congress leadership is finding it hard to convince its senior MLAs to take up the post.