The Bijapur Lok Sabha constituency (reserved for Scheduled Caste candidates), which comprises eight Assembly segments, is presently represented by Ramesh Jigajinagi of the Bharatiya Janata Party. The region has not seen the establishment of any major industry or significant development in the tourism sector in the past five decades.
Though the district has tremendous growth opportunities, people wonder why Bijapur has not transformed from a “backward district” into a “prosperous” district.
The Kudgi thermal power plant, presently under construction, is the only major project in the district, although it will take some time to be commissioned.
The district, which has a population of 21.75 lakh, according to the 2011 Census, has no major industries. Nearly 16 lakh people live in rural areas and their primary occupation is agriculture. The district, according to experts, has two major resources that can be harnessed — tourism and agriculture. The Adil Shahi monuments that are spread across Bijapur city and also some parts of the district could be developed so that they attract more tourists. The initiative can also create more employment opportunities in the tourism sector, according to experts.
Agriculture is one of the major sectors that has the potential to change the fortune of the district if irrigation facility is provided. Many parts of the district, which is surrounded by five rivers, lack irrigation.
Bijapur district has seen only one Minister in the Union Cabinet so far. Basanagouda Patil Yatnal, BJP leader and two-time MP, was the Union Minister of State for Railways during the National Democratic Alliance government.
Only three women candidates have contested the Lok Sabha elections from this constituency since 1957. While two women contested as Independent candidates in the 1984 and 2009 elections, in 1999, Lakshmibai Gudadinni, wife of the former MP B.K. Gudadinni, contested on Congress ticket. However, she lost to Mr. Yatnal.
In 1984, of the nine people in the fray in the constituency, seven were Independent candidates. The 1977 elections had only two candidates in the fray in Bijapur.
Giridharlal Dubey, a native of Agra, contested the Lok Sabha election from Bijapur twice. He won the 1957 election, but lost in 1962.