The core committee of the Bharatiya Janata Party is meeting here on Saturday to finalise the names of its first list of candidates.
According to sources, the first list is likely to have about 125 names, most of whom are sitting MLAs. After finalising, the list would be forwarded to the party central election committee for its approval.
In fact, selection of candidates for most of the places is said to have already been finalised in the last one week by the party through the interaction with its district units. However, the core committee is expected to formalise these things.
Though the party technically has 106 MLAs in its fold presently, a few of them are expected to cross the floor to other parties, especially the Karnataka Janata Paksha of the former Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa. In this context, the party leaders are learnt to have decided against announcing the list on Saturday. Instead, indications would be given to the candidates about their selection and they would be asked to go ahead with the poll preparations, sources said.
Meanwhile, the party is also likely to discuss on Saturday on whether to give ticket to “tainted” MLAs who had either been lodged in jail or facing serious corruption charges like Katta Subramanya Naidu and Krishnaiah Setty.
The question of whether to give ticket to such candidates to contest the polls has become a tricky issue for the party that wants to target Mr. Yeddyurappa who is facing serious corruption charges. Fielding such candidates would rob the party of an opportunity to attack the KJP on corruption. But the party is in a dilemma as these candidates are not only influential, but also not allowed alternative leadership to emerge in their constituencies.