Karnataka govt transfers Mandya deputy commissioner after EC direction
The Karnataka government Tuesday transferred the deputy commissioner of Mandya, from where Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy's son Nikhil is contesting the Lok Sabha election as JD(S) candidate, following direction from the Election Commission.

P C Jaffer, IAS commissioner for public instruction, Bengaluru, is transferred with immediate effect and posted until further order as deputy commissioner, Mandya district, from where Deputy Commissioner N Manjushree is transferred, the official notification said.

The order is issued as per the direction of Election Commission of India, it said.

Independent candidate Sumalatha Ambareesh had accused Manjushree of "bias".

She had alleged that Kumaraswamy was misusing the office of the deputy commissioner, also the district election officer.

Sumalatha's polling agent had also alleged that the DC did not act on their complaint against flaws in Nikhil Kumaraswamy's nomination papers.

Sumalatha, a multi-lingual actress and widow of actor-turned-politician M H Ambareesh, is contesting as an independent candidate from Mandya, from where her late husband had contested on a Congress ticket.

BJP is supporting Sumalatha, by not fielding any candidate in Mandya.

Congress had denied ticket to Sumalatha, citing coalition compulsions, and ceded the seat to JD(S), as the party had sitting MP there.

However, several Congress leaders and workers, miffed over the party's decision to cede the seat to JD(S), their arch-rival in the Vokkaliga bastion, have extended support to Sumalatha.

It is a high-stake battle for Kumaraswamy in Mandya as his son is the coalition candidate.

Sumalatha is also running a high-voltage campaign, with several Kannada film industry personalities on her side. Film stars like Darshan and Yash are actively campaigning for her.

Mandya will go to polls on April 18, the first phase of the two-phase polling in the state.