In the recently held Karnataka gram panchayat elections, whose results were out on Wednesday, two transgenders emerged victorious.
KR Nagar in Mysuru saw a transgender candidate Devika win. She won Ward 7 (which was reserved for SC) of Saligrama panchayat. Devika told the media that her priority is serving people.
"When I visited people's homes seeking votes, they had kind words for me. Now, that they have placed their confidence in me, I will strive to live up to their expectations,” she said.
Villagers are celebrating and are proud of her victory. According to SJ Gunapal Jain, a former gram panchayat member from the village, she is the first transgender to be elected to their panchayat. He told the reporters, “She contested on her own. She is a resident of the local SC Colony.”
Similarly, in the Kalahalli panchayat in Hosapete, a transgender Sudha emerged as the first candidate to be elected in close to three decades. She was declared the winner in Kallahalli where candidates were elected unanimously for the last 26 years.
The elections to 5,728 village panchayats had taken place across 226 taluks of the state for 82,616 seats. They were conducted in two phases on December 22 and 27 where 78.58 percent voting was registered.
This time, the gram panchayat election results saw many surprises.
In Gohalli ward of Challahalli panchayat in Hunsur taluk, two women candidates had secured 100 votes each. Meanwhile in Gadag, Guljar Banu, the wife of Shigli Basya, an infamous thief-turned-social crusader, won the polls.
The State Election Commission declared the results for 54,041 seats out of the total 91,339 as of 8 pm Wednesday. Results for the remaining 36,781 seats will be available by Thursday.
(Edited by Saheli Sen Gupta)