CM: KPCC chief's one-family-one-ticket norm impractical

CM: KPCC chief's one-family-one-ticket norm impractical

Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Monday rejected Pradesh Congress Committee president G Parameshwara's suggestion for adopting the one-family-one-ticket norm to check the clamour among family members of party leaders to get picked for the coming Assembly elections.

Siddaramaiah said it was "impractical" to enforce or implement such a norm for selecting candidates.

"The suggestion may look good. But it is impractical and not possible to implement in political parties. We have already given tickets to two members of the same family in the last Assembly elections. If the one-family-one-ticket rule is applied, can we deny tickets to sitting MLAs?" Siddaramaiah wondered.

"We have the case of senior leader Mallikarjun Kharge whose son is an MLA and a minister," he told reporters here.  

Mallikarjun Kharge is an MP from Gulbarga Lok Sabha constituency and his son Priyank Kharge is an MLA from Chittapur and also a state minister.

Similarly, Housing Minister M Krishnappa is an MLA from Vijayanagar while his son Priya Krishna too is a legislator from Govindarajnagar. "Is it possible to apply the one-family-one-ticket rule to them?" the chief minister asked.

Siddaramaiah said primacy should be given to the "winnability factor" in deciding the candidates as there could be a tough challenge for the ruling party in the polls.

"Winnability of candidates is our top criteria and nothing else," the chief minister said when asked about the norms for selecting candidates.

"Let Parameshwara place his suggestion before the party high command. They will take a final call on this issue," the chief minister said. "Before giving tickets," he insisted, "we will take views from the party workers and local leaders."

The chief minister, who is keen to field his doctor son Yathindra from Varuna constituency, said he would shift from Varuna (of which he is a sitting member) to Chamundeshwari seat in the coming polls.

Earlier, the chief minister said his  son has expressed his willingness to contest from Varuna and has hit the ground already in the run-up to the polls.

The chief minister's statement expressing his disagreement with the state unit president comes when the party is preparing to announce the first list of candidates in a month or so.

Parameshwara had stated that the state unit would suggest to the party top brass to follow the one-family-one-ticket norm to prevent any powerful political family from "cornering" tickets. His suggestion was essentially seen a move to block the ticket to the chief minister's son.

However, this is not the first time the chief minister has openly differed with the PCC president who once served as the home minister in his Cabinet.

Earlier when Siddaramaiah favoured senior Lingayat leader S R Patil as the PCC chief, Parameshawara found suppport from other senior leaders in prevailing upon the party high command to retain him as the state unit chief for a second consecutive term.

Siddaramaiah said he has started touring the state to launch development projects covering 100 Assembly segments in one month. The PCC chief will also tour the state and hold meetings with party workers in another 100 Assembly constituencies in one month.

From March first week, the chief minister, party president and other leaders will hold joint rallies across the state, he said.

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