Bengaluru: Amid high drama that lasted for over an hour, second-time corporator from BBMP’s Jogupalya ward M Gowtham Kumar, a staunch BJP worker with RSS background, was elected 53rd mayor of Bengaluru on Tuesday. With this, the Congress-JD(S) coalition, which ruled BBMP for the last four years, will come to an end.
Kumar’s victory to the top post became easy after the saffron party managed to convince three-time corporator and BJP’s opposition leader in the BBMP council Padmanabh Reddy to withdraw the nomination at the last minute. He was a strong contender for the top post but Gowtham Kumar emerged as the dark horse.
BJP’s Gowtham got 129 votes as against 112 votes received by Sathyanarayana of the Congress. CR Rajmohan from Bommanahalli has been elected deputy mayor.
The total strength of the BBMP council comprising of MPs, MLAs and MLCs stood at 247, down from 257 members. The BJP was the single largest party with 125 members comprising of 101 corporators, four Lok Sabha MPs etc. The mayor candidate was backed by independents.
Earlier in the day, senior BJP leader and minister R Ashoka had expressed confidence over winning the mayoral election. “We will all stand by the party’s decision in supporting the candidate. There is no confusion. Padmanabh Reddy will withdraw his nomination,” he said.