Congress to contest 21 seats in Legislative Council elections

Congress to contest 21 seats  in Legislative Council elections

IT and BT Minister S R Patil (Vijayapura-Bagalkot seat) and former chief minister N Dharam Singh’s son Vijay Singh (Bidar seat) are among 17 candidates finalised by the Congress high command on Friday to contest the coming elections to the Karnataka Legislative Council.

Of the total 25 constituencies, the Congress has decided to field its candidates in 21 of them. Except Bengaluru Urban, Kolar, Dakshina Kannada and Ballari, the candidates for all other constituencies have been finalised. The high command is learnt to have authorised Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and KPCC president G Parameshwara to finalise the candidates for the remaining four seats after consulting the local leaders.

The party has already directed the selected candidates to their file nomination papers in their respective constituencies. The chief minister and the KPCC president recently spent two days in Delhi holding consultations with the high command on selecting the candidates.

The elections are scheduled to be held on December 27, if necessary. The filing of the nomination papers began on December 2 and the last day for filing the papers is December 10.

For the Bengaluru Urban seat, sitting MLC Dayanand Reddy is eager to contest again. But Narayana Gowda and Hanumantharayappa are also trying to get the ticket to contest from the constituency. Finalising the candidates for the Ballari local body constituency has become a tough task for the party as there are too many aspirants: K C Kondaiah, Suryanarayana Reddy, Allam Veerabhadrappa and Diwakar Babu.

The names of party candidates for 17 constituencies are as follows: Kalaburagi - Allamaprabu Patil; Belagavi - Veerakumar Patil; Vijayapura/Bagalkot - S R Patil; Kodagu - Chandramouli; Mysuru/ Chamarajanagar - Dharmasena; Hubbali-Dharwad - Srinivas Mane and Nagaraj Chebbi (there are two seats here); Chikkamagaluru - Gayatri Shante Gowda; Bengaluru Rural - S Ravi; Tumakuru - Rajendra; Shivamogga - Prasanna Kumar; Bidar - Vijay Singh; Hassan - Gopalaswamy; Mandya - Shivarame Gowda; Chitradurga - Raghu Achar; Raichur - Basavaraj Patil Itagi.

BJP probables

The BJP has already announced its candidates for 12 seats. The party has decided to field only one candidate in the dual seat constituencies of Vijayapura, Belagavi, Dakshina Kannada, Dharwad and Mysuru.

Party sources said only one candidate each will be filing the nomination in the five constituencies to prevent splitting of votes as the preferential system of voting is followed for the Council polls.

So, in effect, the BJP candidates will be contesting in only 20 of the 25 constituencies. Among the eight seats, wherein the BJP is yet to officially declare its candidate, the party is likely to field Poornima Srinivas, sitting BBMP corporator, from the Tumakuru local authorities’ constituency. Poornima is the daughter of former JD(S) State president and minister A Krishnappa.

Up north, Sanjay Kheny, brother of MLA and Nandi Infrastructure Corridor Enterprise managing director Ashok Kheny, is likely to be given the ticket to contest from Bidar.
In Bengaluru Urban, former legislator Nandeesh Reddy is likely to be given the ticket. Reddy, a one-term MLA, had unsuccessfully contested the 2013 assembly polls from KR Puram constituency.

Other probables include Surendra Gowda (Kolar) and Raichur (P V Chandra). The party is yet to finalise its candidates for Hassan and Mandya constituencies, the party sources said.

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