With just a day left for the election to the post of Mayor and Deputy Mayor, the contest has intensified. The Mayor’s post has been reserved for the general category, while the Deputy Mayor’s post is reserved for the Scheduled Tribes (woman).

On Monday, BJP’s city MLAs met to decide on the mayoral candidate. With no consensus, the party leadership has scheduled a meeting with its 113 councillors on Tuesday.

There is no ambiguity with regard to the Deputy Mayor’s post, as there is only one lady councillor — Indira from Byatarayanapura — belonging to Scheduled Tribes category in the BBMP council.

The frontrunners for the Mayor’s post are Basavanagudi councillor B.S. Sathyanarayana, Pattabhiramanagar councillor C.K. Ramamurthy, J.P. Park councillor B.R. Nanjundappa, Dr. Rajkumar ward councillor Gangabyraiah and Vijayanagar councillor H. Ravindra.

BJP sources said that caste will play an important role in who will become the next Mayor. Of the five frontrunners, two belong to the Brahmin community and three hail from the Vokkaliga community. The decision is a loaded one, as it will have a bearing on the next Lok Sabha elections.

Sources said that if a Brahmin councillor is chosen for the post, then one from the Vokkaliga community will be made Ruling Party Leader and vice-versa. “The final decision will be announced only after the party has sought the opinion of councillors,” sources added.

So who can vote in the Mayoral polls? The total strength of the BBMP council is 270. This includes, 198 councillors — 113 from BJP, 64 from Congress, 15 from Janata Dal (S) and six independents, 28 city MLAs, eight MLCs, 12 Rajya Sabha MPs, four Lok Sabha MPs and 20 nominated members. However, the nominated members have no voting powers. As it is, there are no nominated members in the BBMP council at present. After the new Congress government came to power in the State, the 20 members were asked to resign from the council membership.

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