No Cong-JD(S) pact in RR Nagar as campaigning ends

(From left) BJP state president and leader of the Opposition B S Yeddyurappa, party candidate Tulasi Muniraju Gowda P M and actor Shruti campaign in Rajarajeshwari Nagar on Saturday.

Brisk campaigning at the Rajarajeshwari Nagar constituency came to an end on Saturday, with the polling scheduled for Monday.

Top leaders of all political parties campaigned in the constituency in support of their candidates. Senior Congress leader D K Shivakumar had asked the leadership of ally JD(S) to ask its workers to support Congress candidate Munirathna.

"The Congress party has made a big sacrifice in forming the coalition government (in the state) and the JD(S) should acknowledge that by supporting our candidate," Shivakumar said.

The request is made since the JD(S), which already fielded its candidate in the constituency, cannot withdraw his name at the late stage, Shivakumar explained. But JD(S) supremo H D Deve Gowda clarified that the coalition is limited only to the government formation in the state.

On the campaign trail, Gowda said it is his responsibility to ensure a victory for the JD(S) candidate and refused to support Munirathna.

On the discovery of voter IDs in an apartment in RR Nagar — in which the police have named Munirathna as an accused — Gowda said the Election Commission is well aware of what the Congress candidate has done.

Prajwal Revanna, who accompanied his grandfather on the campaign trail, said: "If he (Gowda) speaks here, they will all say that it is a party of grandfather and grandson."

Sources said talks between the two parties broke down after the Congress shot down the JD(S)' request to let its candidate win the Rajarajeshwari Nagar constituency and, in turn, it would help the Congress win Jayanagar.

Opposition leader B S Yeddyurappa held two roadshows in RR Nagar in support of the BJP candidate, Tulasi Muniraju Gowda P M, while Union minister D V Sadananda Gowda also campaigned for the candidate.

Election to the RR Nagar constituency was deferred when Election Commission officials raided an apartment and confiscated more than 10,000 voter ID cards. Munirathna was named as one of the accused in a case filed on the incident. He was later granted bail.

The Jalahalli police, who are handling the case, said it is up to the Election Commission to decide if the ongoing investigations will have a bearing on the elections.

"Election-related offences will invite Rs 250 or, at the most, Rs 25,000 penalty (if convicted). There is no imprisonment for these offences," the police said.  

BU postpones exams 

The Bangalore University has postponed the exams scheduled on May 28 and June 11 due to the byelections to the Rajarajeshwarinagar and Jayanagar Assembly constituencies,  respectively, on the two days.

The varsity's second and sixth semester exams, scheduled on May 28, has been pushed, respectively, to June 13 and June 7. The second semester exam, scheduled for June 11, has been deferred to June 14.

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No Cong-JD(S) pact in RR Nagar as campaigning ends

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