State's poll process begins today

Parties still grappling with candidates

State's poll process begins today

The Election Commission of India (ECI) will set the ball rolling on Wednesday for the Lok Sabha elections in the State by issuing notification, even as political parties are grappling to select candidates for many constituencies. 

The filing of nomination papers will commence from Wednesday and can be filed between 11 am and 3 pm. Candidates will have to file their assets and liabilities in a prescribed format (Form 26). 

For the first time, candidates will have to disclose any asset or liability they have in foreign countries. The copies of the papers will be uploaded to the website of the Office of the Chief Electoral Officer.

Till the eve of nomination, the BJP had not announced its candidates for the Bidar, Hassan and Bellary constituencies.  Even the JD(S) is playing the waiting game. The Congress, which announced candidates for Uttara Kannada and Bangalore North on Tuesday, is yet to announce its candidates for the Haveri and Dharwad constituencies. The party is also facing the heat of rebellion over ticket distribution. 

The saffron party has not finalised candidates for three constituencies due to resistance from local leaders. Former Mysore MP C H Vijayashankar, who has been asked to contest from Hassan, is insisting that he be given the Mysore seat. 

Bidar MLA Gurupadappa Nagamarapalli has been lobbying for a ticket from Bidar for his son Suryakanth. 

The party has told former minister B Sriramulu that he should resign as MLA from Bellary (the Assembly seat he won on a BSR Congress ticket) to contest from the Bellary parliamentary constituency.

In Bangalore, BJP sitting MPs Ananth Kumar and PC Mohan are expected to file their nomination papers from Bangalore South and Bangalore Central constituencies, respectively, on Wednesday. 

The Congress is struggling to prevent rebellion over ticket distribution. While party veteran Jaffer Sharief, who is miffed with the party for not giving him the ticket from Bangalore Central, is all set to join the JD(S), former chief minister S Bangarappa's son Kumar Bangarappa has demanded that the party give him a ticket from Shimoga. 

The JD(S) has kept its cadre guessing over its candidates in most of the constituencies. The party is in two minds over fielding H D Kumaraswamy from Chikkaballapur, as his wife Anitha has decided not to contest. Similarly, the party is waiting for Sharief's nod to field him from Mysore. Further, official announcement of C S Puttaraju contesting from Mandya has also been kept in abeyance. 

ECI Deputy Commissioner Ashok Shukla urged the officers to follow the guidelines framed by the commission in letter and spirit in the run-up to the polls. Along with Karnataka, nominations will open in 15 other states on Wednesday.

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