Independent MP and actor-turned-politician Sumalatha Ambareesh joins BJP

PTI | Bengaluru | Updated: 05-04-2024 13:08 IST | Created: 05-04-2024 13:08 IST
Independent MP and actor-turned-politician Sumalatha Ambareesh joins BJP
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Actor-turned-politician and independent MP from Mandya in Karnataka Sumalatha Ambareesh on Friday joined the BJP.

Veteran BJP leader B S Yediyurappa, state President B Y Vijayendra, Leader of Opposition in the state Assembly R Ashoka, national General Secretary in-charge of elections in Karnataka Radha Mohan Das Agarwal and former Chief Minister D V Sadananda Gowda were among those who welcomed the 60-year-old into the party fold at its state headquarters here.

With BJP ceding Mandya seat to its alliance partner JD(S) in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls, Sumalatha, after consulting her supporters and wellwishers in Mandya, on Wednesday announced her decision to opt out of the elections, and join the BJP.

The wife of popular film star M H Ambareesh, Sumalatha had earlier staked claim for BJP ticket for re-election from the Mandya seat that was represented by her late husband in the past. But the party convinced her and gave it to JD(S).

JD(S) state President and former Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy is now the alliance's joint candidate from Mandya.

Kumaraswamy on Sunday met Sumalatha, and sought her cooperation in the polls. As an independent candidate, Sumalatha had won the seat in 2019 by defeating the then Chief Minister Kumaraswamy's son Nikhil Kumaraswamy of JD(S), by a margin of 1,25,876 votes, with the BJP's support. It was a bitterly fought election back then. The JD(S) was in an alliance with the Congress at the time.

Sumalatha entered politics in 2019 and plunged into the poll arena as an independent, after the Congress, of which her late husband was a part, denied her the ticket, as the party had ceded the Mandya seat to its then alliance partner JD(S). Both parties were then running a coalition government under Kumaraswamy's Chief Ministership.

Late Ambareesh had served as MP, MLA and Minister in Karnataka and at the Centre in the Congress governments. He was also part of Janata Dal in the past In the 2019 polls, Sumalatha rode on a sympathy wave following the death of her husband, who was an icon of sorts in Mandya district. Popular Kannada film stars like Darshan Thoogudeepa and Yash (Naveen Kumar Gowda), along with her son Abishek Ambareesh had extensively campaigned for her then.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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