The Bharatiya Janata Party on Thursday announced the candidates for five of the eight remaining constituencies in the State, giving room to the view that the entry of B. Sriramulu of the BSR Congress to the BJP to contest from Bellary is still under consideration. The candidates for Hassan and Bidar are yet to be named.
The central leadership of the party is said to have approved the name of Mr. Sriramulu for the Bellary seat but this is yet to be officially announced although it has been said that the opposition raised by Sushma Swaraj against the BSR Congress leader has been overruled.
Though the party wanted to announce the names of candidates for all the remaining eight seats in one go, the second list announced late on Thursday comprised only five names as the party could not convince the former Mysore MP C.H. Vijayashankar to shift to Hassan and could not decide on whether to choose the former Minister Gurupadappa Nagamarapalli or his son Suryakanth Nagamarapalli for Bidar.
Mr. Vijayashankar, who is keen on contesting from Mysore, is upset as the party has fielded columnist Pratap Simha for the seat and wants him to shift to Hassan. The party approved the candidature of Mr. Simha, who is yet to join its fold, despite protests by its local leaders in Mysore.
The highlight of the second list is that the former Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa, who recently rejoined its fold, has managed to get ticket for all his staunch supporters. While the former Minister Shobha Karandlaje has been fielded from Udupi-Chikmagalur, incumbent Tumkur MP G.S. Basavaraj, who has been suspended from the party for identifying with the Karnataka Janata Paksha headed by Mr. Yeddyurappa, has been given ticket to re-contest from this seat.
The former MLA M. Narayanaswamy has been fielded from Kolar while the former chairman of the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board and Karnataka Renewable Energy Development Ltd. B. Shivalingaiah has been given ticket to contest from Mandya.Third list
The party is now expected to announce the third list on March 15 to name the candidates for the remaining three seats. The party announced its first list comprising names of 20 candidates on March 8.