After the entry of actor Prakash Raj into the fray, the Bengaluru Central parliament constituency has drawn eyeballs as the constituency is passing through a pitched three cornered fight.
In Bengaluru Central, the sitting MP, PC Mohan, is seeking a hattrick after having won the seat since it went to polls for the first time in 2009. In 2014, with the Modi wave strongly behind him, he won by a wider margin of 1,30,000 votes as opposed to near-40,000 in 2009.
As for the demographics, the seat has a significant minority population – Muslims and Christians along with Jains and others. Apart from religious minorities, the constituency is also home to linguistic minorities comprising a significant Tamil and Telugu speaking population.
Adding up all the numbers in the eight assembly constituencies, the Congress-JD(S) alliance has an upper hand with more than two lakh (2,06,543) votes.
While the Congress candidate Rizwan Arshad, who was fielded last time too, will be helped by the JD(S) support, popular multi-lingual actor Prakash Raj is a notable third entrant in the race. He is expected to split the votes, according to political observers.
Noted political analyst Sandeep Shastri is of the opinion that a combination of factors puts the alliance ahead of the BJP even though Prakash Raj could prove to be a thorn in the side of the Congress. This even though the electorate in the area vote keeping in mind the national scene.
Prakash Raj has already received the support of Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and the Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) in his bid to be elected from Bengaluru Central constituency. AAP will not be fielding a candidate in Bengaluru Central constituency and is actively backing Prakash Raj. He has also already secured the support of many civil societies. Among them, the Whitefield Rising [a citizens’ collective] is a major pillar of support for the actor.
The actor is engaged in public interaction as much as he can. And at many locations he was said to have mobbed by commonfolks. Prakash had campaigned for Congress leader and former Karnataka CM Siddaramaiah in the Assembly elections held in May 2018. So, Prakash Raj personally wished for the Congress-JD(S) support for his candidature, but unfortunately Congress-JD(S) coalition fielded a candidate of their own.
Experts has no doubt about Prakash Raj will take away some of the Congress-JD(S) votes. Prakash Raj because of his anti-BJP stance will take away only the Congress votes. Though Prakash Raj may not win this time, but he could shake the constituency to think beyond BJP and Congress.