Eight of the richest candidates, barring one, were swept away by the Modi wave as BJP staged a comeback in the Lok Sabha polls in Karnataka. Only Bangalore Rural MP D K Suresh, brother of Energy Minister D K Shivakumar, with assets worth Rs 85 core, tasted victory.
Nandan Nilekani, who was the richest candidate in fray for the 16th Lok Sabha, was defeated by BJP's Ananth Kumar, who retained the Bangalore South seat for the sixth time winning it by a huge margin of over 2,27,000 votes. The IT czar, who was chief architect of Aadhar programme, has declared assets worth over Rs 7,700 crore. Initially, it looked as though he was giving a run for the money to his formidable rival but the constituency did not break from its anti-Congress tradition prevailing since the late 1970s.
Another technocrat and Nilekani's former Infoysian colleague Balakrishnan contesting as AAP candidate finished a poor third behind BJP's PC Mohan and Congress' Rizwan Arshad in Bangalore Central. He is ranked third on the list with close to Rs 190 crore assets.
Interestingly, both men conceded defeat even before the poll results were officially announced. Real estate developer and JDS candidate P Prabhakar Reddy did not find acceptance of the Bangalore rural electorate. He has assets of over Rs 220 crore and liabilities to the tune of Rs 221 crore.
Former Prime Minister HD Deve Gowda's son and former Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy came third, losing to Union Minister Veerappa Moily in Chikkaballapur constituency. He has assets worth Rs 149 crore.
Prashant Deshpande, son of Karnataka Minister RV Deshpande, and SS Mallikarjun (both Congress) and former minister Jeevraj Alva's wife Nandini Alva (JDS), who was short of the Rs 100 crore mark by only few lakhs, lost from Uttar Kannada, Davanagere and Bangalore Central, respectively.
Karnataka is one of the important states which gave good seat tally to BJP, sending 17 of its candidates to Lok Sabha. BJP has made a remarkable recovery ever since the party lost power in the Assembly polls.