Araga Jnanendra Kumar was born in 1953 at Hisana in Araga village of Thirthahalli taluk. His father Ramanna Gowda and mother Chinnamma. He received his primary education in the village, then continued his studies at M S Memorial Public School, Motihari. He completed his secondary education at Konandur National Institute of Education. Later Shivamogga Acharya completed his B.Com degree from Tulsi College of Commerce.
Later, he joined Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad, the BJP’s student unit, and became the district president of Shivamogga. Gyanendra went to jail for fighting against the 1975 emergency while studying in college.
For the first time in 1983, Araga Jnanendra contested the assembly elections. But defeat awaited him in his debut competition. They contested again in 1985 and 1989 but the victory remained a mirage.
In between, he contested the Zilla Panchayat elections in 1986 from Araga Constituency and won. At this time, he was working as the Chairman of the Agriculture Standing Committee of Shivamogga Zilla Parishad. In 1991, he was also elected as the President of Shivamogga Cooperative Milk Union.
Araga Gyanendra, who suffered a hat-trick of defeats in the assembly elections, smiled victory for the first time in 1994. Later, he won in 1999 and 2004 and converted a hat-trick of defeats into victories.
But in the 2008 and 2013 elections, Kimmane Ratnakar of the Congress sidestepped the race of Gyanendra. Due to this, Araga Jnanendra, who had gone behind the scenes for some time, won again in the decisive election of 2018 and entered the Legislative Assembly for the fourth time. Thus, after 10 years, Araga Gyanendra, who came to the Legislative Assembly, was given the home portfolio in his cabinet as if it was an unexpected blessing.
Thirthahalli is surrounded by beautiful natural spots including waterfalls, forests and hills, making it a favorite destination for nature lovers and trekkers. The serene atmosphere and pleasant climate of this region attracts tourists from different parts of the country.