Staff Correspondent

They are unhappy with allotment of Congress ticket in Dharwad

They want party ticket for former Minister Morey

Congress may see many ‘rebel’ candidates

DHARWAD: Displeasure over allotment of Congress ticket in Dharwad has led to eight councillors of the Hubli-Dharwad Municipal Corporation forwarding their resignation letters to KPCC president Mallikarjun Kharge.

Their action is in the wake of denial of the party ticket to their leader and former Minister S.R. Morey.

Congress leaders and workers in the district are unhappy with regard to issue of ticket in Hubli-Dharwad West and Hubli-Dharwad Central constituencies.

While Mr. Morey, who represented Dharwad City (now renamed as Hubli-Dharwad West) in the last Assembly, had sought ticket to contest from Dharwad because of the changed structure of the constituency after delimitation. However, the former MLA Vinay Kulkarni, who represented Dharwad Rural (now Dharwad) constituency, has been given the party ticket.

Mr. Morey’s reluctance to contest from Hubli-Dharwad West has resulted in the party’s high command giving ticket to a Muslim leader and former MLA, Jabbar Khan Honnalli, who had lost his constituency (Hubli city, now Hubli Dharwad East-SC) because of the change in reservation after delimitation. This development came as a shock to Mr. Morey’s supporters, and seven councillors from Dharwad, including Deepak Chinchore, have sent their resignation letters to the KPCC president and have also threatened that they will not work for an “outsider”.

Meanwhile, Mr. Morey said that the party had not yet officially released the list of candidates and expressed the hope that the high command would consider him for ticket.

In Hubli-Dharwad Central constituency too, where the former Minister and BJP leader Jagadish Shettar is contesting, there is displeasure among Congress workers for issuing party ticket to Sunil Sandra, son of former Minister Gopinath Sandra.

This development has led to the former Mayor Anilkumar Patil, who had contested against Mr. Shettar in the last election, indicating that he might contest the election as a “rebel” candidate.

‘Positive signals’

Meanwhile, “positive” signals from the party high command has made Mr. Patil to put off his decision on contesting the election.

Mr. Patil told The Hindu that he would be contesting from Hubli-Dharwad Central.

“Whether I should be contesting on Congress ticket or Janata Dal (Secular) or BSP ticket is to be decided,” he said.

Meanwhile, the decision to issue party ticket to F.H. Jakkappanavar for Hubli-Dharwad East (SC) is also likely to result in Congress “rebel” candidates entering the fray.