The wave of dissidence in the Congress after the announcement of candidates for 177 Legislative Assembly constituencies has pushed the All India Congress Committee to send observers to nip the rebellion in the bud.

Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee president G. Parameshwara told presspersons that the AICC has sent observers from Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Kerala to visit the troubled Assembly constituencies as a damage control exercise. The aim is to sort out differences and ask for cooperation towards the official candidate, failing which they would be warned of action.

Dr. Parameshwara said ticket had been given to those who had maintained character to ensure support from the voters. Of the 177 candidates, 65 are graduates including 30 lawyers, 11 engineers, seven medical doctors and three doctorates. Of the 71 MLAs, 62 had been accommodated. There are 41 new faces and 44 had studied up to SSLC and undergraduation.

Candidates are of varying age: 12 are below 40 years, 52 in the 41-50 age group, 60 between 51-60, 48 in the 61-70 age group and five were above 70 years, which includes one octogenarian. He appealed to the party leaders and workers to dedicate themselves to the success of the candidates and bring the party to power. Denying the charge that ticket was sold, Dr. Parameshwara said the selection exercise was transparent. If anybody had doubts, they could directly lodge a complaint with the AICC.

He said the unit had requested AICC president Sonia Gandhi, vice-president Rahul Gandhi and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to campaign in the State, though the dates of their visit has not been decided.

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