The huge demand for ticket coupled with the fact that party hoppers are yet to settle down has made the Bharatiya Janata Party to further put off the release of the first list of candidates for the Assembly elections till the first week of April.

Hinting this while addressing the inaugural session of the election management workshop for the BJP cadre in Bangalore on Thursday, party State president Pralhad Joshi, however, made it clear that there was no confusion or problem as being reported by media in finalising the first list. “We want to release the first list of candidates only in April first week mainly because we have too many aspirants,” he said.

According to him, the party has shortlisted the names of aspirants for the places where there are multiple contenders. The party would hold a meeting of prominent leaders from its district units in Bangalore on March 30 to discuss the shortlisted names in a bid to finalise the selection process. If the party is unable to reduce the long list of aspirants in any constituency even after consultation with district leaders, a team of leaders such as Deputy Chief Minister R. Ashok and Ministers Arvind Limbavali and C.T. Ravi would be sent to those constituencies to assess the ground realities like which candidate is stronger etc. Based on these reports, the candidates’ names would be finalised in the first week of April,” he said.

He stated that getting clearance for the list from the party central election committee would only be a formality as the State unit itself would finalise the list in most of the constituencies by recommending the name of only one aspirant in each of the constituency through consultations with district units.

He ridiculed the Opposition Congress whose leaders are camping in Delhi to finalise their list of candidates. “Unlike us, each one of the Congress leaders including Siddaramaiah, G. Parameshwara, Mallikarjun Kharge and D. K. Shivakumar, have their own lists. Hence the Congress is finding it difficult to finalise its list,” he remarked.

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