The ex-chief minister of Karnataka, D V Sadananda Gowda, is preparing to contest from a parliamentary constituency for the fourth time. Gowda is contesting from Bangalore North, the same constituency that had elected him in 2014. The last five years of Gowda’s political journey have been spent mostly in Delhi. A 2013 profile of Sadananda Gowda by Citizen Matters throws more light on his rise within the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Karnataka.
In 2014, Bengaluru North constituency had over 24 lakh voters, of whom over 13.5 lakh came out to vote. Gowda won from this constituency for the first time then, securing 7.18 lakh votes, i.e., 52.9 percent of the polled votes. He got 2.29 lakh more votes than the runner-up, C Narayana Swamy of INC.
But the scenario may have changed now, and Gowda will have to work hard to win. In last year’s state assembly elections, JDS and INC together had won seven out of the eight assembly constituencies that make up Bengaluru North parliamentary constituency. Hebbal and Dasarahalli constituencies, that previously had BJP MLAs, slipped out of the party’s hands in the assembly election. BJP retained only Malleshwaram. The strength of the INC-JDS alliance is sure to give a tough fight to Gowda in the parliamentary polls.
- Name: D V Sadananda Gowda
- Age: 67
- Constituency: Bengaluru North
- Party: BJP
- Education: LLB from Udupi Law College, Mysore University, 1973-74
- Profession: Lawyer by qualification
- Address: #108B, Ranga Nilaya, 5th Cross, 4th Main, MLA Layout, Bhoopasandra, Sanjayanagar, Bengaluru – 560094
- Tel: 9448123249
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Other online presence:
- Website: http://sadanandagowda.com
- Facebook: Sadananda Gowda
- Twitter: @DVSBJP
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/dvsbjp
There are no criminal cases pending against Sadananda Gowda.
Assets and Liabilities in INR
Gowda’s assets increased from Rs 9.8 cr to Rs 20.6 cr in the last five years, that is, a sharp rise by 110 percent.
Prominent positions held:
- Union Cabinet Minister, Statistics and Programme Implementation (July 2016 onwards)
- Union Cabinet Minister, Law and Justice (November 2014 – July 2016)
- Minister for Railways (May 2014 – November 2014)
- Elected to the 16th Lok Sabha (2014 – 2019) from Bengaluru North Lok Sabha constituency
- Leader of Opposition, Karnataka Legislative Council (May 2013 – May 2014)
- Chief Minister of Karnataka (August 2011 – July 2012)
- Elected to the 15th Lok Sabha (2009 – December 2011) from Udupi-Chikmagalur Lok Sabha constituency
- Elected to the 14th Lok Sabha (2004 – 2009) from Mangalore Lok Sabha constituency
- MLA from Puttur constituency for two terms (1994-2004)
In 15th Lok Sabha
- Member, House Committee
- Member, Committee on Science & Technology, Environment & Forests
- Director, Central Coffee Board
In 14th Lok Sabha
- Member, Committee on Commerce
Performance as minister
Sadananda Gowda became the Minister of Railways soon after the NDA government came to power in 2014. Railways was considered an important ministry for which the Prime Minister had many plans. However, Gowda was shifted to the Law Ministry in a cabinet rejig within just six months of his appointment, before he had a chance to do any serious work in the Railways Ministry. Many reports attributed this to his inability to handle bureaucrats and get work done.
He is currently serving as the Minister of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI). This Ministry is considered unimportant, yet can spring to limelight when the data it releases sparks controversies.
The controversy over the delayed release of jobs data of the NSSO (National Sample Survey Office) happened during Gowda’s stint at MoSPI. Business Standard had reported that the survey showed India’s unemployment rate rose to 6.1 percent in 2017-18, its highest in 45 years. The government withheld the release of the survey, prompting two members of the National Statistical Commission to resign.
Last October, MoSPI announced plans to conduct the Seventh economic census, and three new surveys – the annual survey of services, annual survey of unincorporated enterprises and time use survey. The ministry also plans to have a national-level data warehouse for all official statistics.
Gowda was instrumental in pumping in MPLADS money to help Kerala flood victims by appealing to MPs. As a result, Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha MPs together donated more than Rs 46 crores to Kerala flood victims.
After the demise of Ananth Kumar, MP of Bengaluru South, Gowda took additional charge of the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilisers.
Mint has quoted political analysts saying that Gowda was retained as a minister to please the Vokkaliga vote bank in Karnataka. On the personal front, Gowda has had to deal with rape charges against his son, which also did not please many in his party.
Being a minister, Gowda was not able to deliver full justice to his role as MP of Bengaluru North in terms of meeting locals etc. However, he tried to participate in party programmes, along with a few programmes organised by local MLAs.
MP in news
Gowda sought active contributions from the pharma sector to improve access to medical care under Ayushman Bharat, the national health protection scheme. He promised that the pharma industry would get government support in maintaining leadership position in the manufacture and supply of high-quality generic medicines.
Last year, he took up the case of Malleswaram resident Reshma Aziz with the External Affairs Ministry. Reshma had been abandoned and given triple talaq by her US-based doctor husband.
In 2015, when he was Union Minister for Law, Gowda said that the Centre was ready to give 3000 MW of electricity to Karnataka, but the state’s lack of power infrastructure was hindering this.
As Minister of Statistics, Gowda said that the centre had created 41 lakh jobs in the informal sector between September 2017 and April 2018. He said the data was based on new subscriptions at EPFO, NPS and ESI.
This March, Gowda laid the foundation stone for the quadrupling of railway line between Bengaluru Cantonment and Whitefield.
Sadananda Gowda has used MPLAD funds for the construction of the indoor volleyball stadium at Chandrashekhar Azad playground, Malleshwaram, as per a Loksabha MPLAD committee inspection report. Further details of Gowda’s MPLADS spending is available here (cost estimates are in lakhs INR).
(Citizen Matters could not get an interview with Sadananda Gowda despite repeated attempts.)
[Revathi Siva Kumar also contributed to this article]