Sub-caste calculus to dictate candidate selection

With the last date for filing nominations for the bypolls to the Bangarpet Assembly constituency fast approaching, hectic activity has begun in the major parties.

Aspirants for tickets have already started lobbying with senior party leaders. All these years, candidates from the Bhovi sub caste of the Scheduled Castes have been given tickets to contest the elections.

There has been talk in the parties that at least this time, the party tickets should be given to those from the ‘left hand’ or ‘right hand’ sub-castes of the Scheduled Castes.

The leaders feel that the voters of these communities may boycott the elections, if their representatives do not get the tickets this time.

There are 75,000 to 80,000 voters belonging to the ‘left hand’ and ‘right hand’ sub-castes, whereas there are 13,000 voters belonging to the Bhovi sub caste.

Leaders of the parties are apprehensive that the rival parties may take advantage of the situation and field candidates from the ‘left hand’ and ‘right hand’ sub-castes.

In the backdrop of these developments, former MLA B P Venkatamuniyappa has declared that he too is an aspirant for the BJP ticket.

Till now, former MLA M Narayanaswamy, who quit the Congress to join the BJP, was the lone aspirant for the party ticket and he had been attending the launching ceremonies of all development works in the taluk in the last two to three months.

With Venkatamuniyappa also throwing his hat into the fray, there is confusion among the party workers.

Though there is talk that Venkatamuniyappa may be fielded from KGF in the next election, many party workers are demanding that he be given the ticket to contest from Bangarpet itself.

Munimarappa, Srikrishna, comedy actor Tennis Krishna and senior leader B P Venkatamuniyappa are the aspirants for the JD(S) ticket in Bangarpet.

Venkatamuniyappa belongs to the ‘right hand’ sub caste of the Scheduled Castes. He is said to have an edge over the others.

With Narayanaswamy (of Bhovi community) likely to get the BJP ticket, the Congress is looking to field a candidate from the ‘right hand’ sub caste.

K M Narayanaswamy, owner of S N Resorts, Ramachandra, Belaganahalli Munivenkatappa, J C B Narayanaswamy (of Bhovi community) and C Venkateshappa are the frontrunners in the Congress.

With ticket aspirants divided along sub caste lines, leaders of all the parties will have a tough time selecting the candidates.

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