Janata Dal (Secular) leader and Deputy Chairman of Legislative Council S.L. Dharme Gowda was found dead on a railway track near Gunasagar in Kadur taluk late in the night on Monday. He is suspected to have died by suicide. He was 65. He is survived by wife Mamatha, son Sonal S.D and daughter Saloni S.D.
He left his farmhouse at Ayyanakere near Sakharayapatna in the evening with his driver Dharmaraj. According to his driver, Dharme Gowda spoke to a friend over the phone. As they reached a road close to the track near Gunasagar around 6.15 pm, Dharme Gowda asked the driver to stop the car and wait till he returned. However, he did not return even hours after he left, and by then his mobile phone was switched off.
The driver called the personal staff of Dharme Gowda, who informed the police. The police and locals found the body around midnight. It is not clear what made him take the step. It is said that Dharme Gowda was hurt with the incidents during the Council meeting on December 15, where Congress MLCs heckled and pushed him from the seat.
Dharme Gowda has left a note mentioning about his properties, besides expressing disappointment over the incidents happened during the council meeting held on December 15, according to BJP National General Secretary C.T. Ravi.
Mr. Ravi, who is also Chikkamagaluru MLA, was one among those who reached the spot early in the morning on Tuesday after learning about the death of Dharme Gowda. He told media that Dharme Gowda had mentioned about the properties he owned and who should get what. “He has also sought his family’s forgiveness for his decision”, he said. Ravi and Dharme Gowda had participated in a couple of programmes in Chikkamagaluru on Monday.
Arasikere Railway Police have registered the case. D. Ashok, DySP (Railway Police) told The Hindu, “I am on the way to the place from Bengaluru. We will investigate the case”. He refused to share details of the death note.
Those in distress or those having suicidal tendencies can call Arogya Sahayavani Ph.: 104 for help.