Bengaluru, Jan 22: Shivananda Patil, who was announced as the JD(S) candidate for the next assembly elections in Karnataka, passed away due to a heart attack late on Friday night. He was 54.
Former Karnataka Chief Minister and party leader HD Kumaraswamy shared the news of Shivananda Patil's demise on his official Twitter handle.
HD Kumaraswamy wrote on Twitter, "The untimely death of party candidate Mr Sivananda Patil has left me deeply shocked. Mr. Patil, who retired after selfless service in the army, had an irrepressible desire for social service. Possessing excellent organizational skills and dynamism, he became very dear to me within a short time of our acquaintance." (sic)
"I am personally deeply saddened by the passing away of Mr. Sivananda Patil. I pray that his soul rests in eternal peace and his family gets strength to bear the grief," the former Karnataka CM wrote.
Patil was announced as the JD(S) candidate from Sindagi constituency. On January 18, he participated in JDS pancharatna yatra in Sindagi along with Kumaraswamy. He was a retired army serviceman.
Sivananda is survived by his wife, son and daughter.
The JD(S) also expressed its grief over Patil's demise tweeted, "Deeply saddened to report that Mr Sivananda Patil, JDS candidate for Sindagi Assembly Constituency passed away untimely due to heart attack. On this occasion, we pray that his family gets the strength to bear this grief. Let us pray for the departed soul to rest in peace."
Assembly elections are due in Karnataka in April-May 2023. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) that has set a target of winning at least 150 of the 224 assembly seats in Karnataka, has made it explicitly clear that it has no plans to partner or ally with the Janata Dal (Secular) or JD(S) in the state.
Since its formation, the JD(S) has never formed a government on its own, but had been in power twice in coalition with the BJP in 2006 and with Congress for 14 months after the May 2018 Assembly polls- with Kumaraswamy as the chief minister. In the 2018 polls, the JD(S) managed to win 37 seats.
This time the party has set an ambitious target of winning at least 123 out of the total 224 seats going to polls by May, and has been seeking votes repeatedly invoking regional Kannadiga pride and asserting itself to be the only Kannadiga party.