BJP’s Mangala Angadi, wife of late Union minister Suresh Angadi, defeated Satish Jarkiholi by 5,240 votes after hours of counting turned the contest into a cliffhanger.
Shubham Shelke, the Maharashtra Ekikarna Samiti-backed independent candidate and tacitly supported by ruling Shiv Sena in Maharashtra in this border constituency, divided the dominant Maratha community votes and this led to the close encounter. Shelke secured 1.2 lakh votes which would have traditionally gone to the BJP.
In the two assembly byelections held on the same day, BJP and Congress shared the honours winning Basavakalyan and Maski segments, respectively.
Mangala is 1st woman MP from Belagavi
While Satish secured a lead in the majority of eight assembly segments, what swung the contest in Mangala’s favour was the 85,641 votes she got in Gokak, held by former water resources minister and Satish’s brother BJP MLA Ramesh Jarkiholi.
While Mangala got 4,40,327 votes, Satish managed to get 4,35,087. She is the first woman MP from this constituency.
BJP and Congress shared honours in the two assembly bypolls, with the former winning Basavakalyan and the latter retaining Maski.
Sharanu Salagar (BJP) sailed home comfortably by a margin of 20,629 votes, maintaining the lead from start to finish, negating any impact of rebel BJP candidate and independent Mallikarjun Khuba who couldn’t cross the 10,000 mark.
JD(S) played a crucial role in dividing the minority votes for the Congress with its candidate Syed Yasrab Ali Qadari getting 20,448 votes. The Congress, which fielded Mala, wife of late MLA B Narayanarao, managed to get 50,383 votes as against Salagar who got 71,012.
The bigger upset was in Maski where BJP MLA Pratapgouda Patil lost by a huge margin of 30,606 votes to Basanagouda Turvihal (Congress).
This, despite chief minister BS Yediyurappa’s son and party state vice-president BY Vijayendr campaigning for Patil.