Special Correspondent

The Act concerned has to be amended, says Bangarappa

Experiment being made by Election Commission termed the best

No party will be able to get a clear majority, says the former Chief Minister

SHIMOGA: The former Chief Minister and Shimoga MP S. Bangarappa said on Monday that the restrictions imposed by the Chief Election Commission under the model code of conduct were welcome, but some of them needed to be reconsidered as they came in way of the effective campaigning.

Addressing presspersons here before leaving for Shikaripur to file his nomination papers, he favoured bringing in amendments to the Act concerned after ascertaining the views of political parties. He admitted that some of the restrictions appeared to be arbitrary.

He said that the low-key campaigning in the State as a result of the model code of conduct was helpful to the candidates who could not afford expensive campaigning. “Even people seem to have welcomed it,” he added.

He hailed the experiment being made by the Election Commission as the best one though some of the restrictions were difficult to be follow.

Mr. Bangarappa, who is contesting against the former Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa from Shikaripur, said that he had not attached any special significance to the contest against him.

Asked why he gave up his decision to contest from the Sagar constituency, he said that it was owing to his health condition which did not allow him to strain much.

There was no initiative from his side to have any pre-poll alliance either with the Congress or the Janata Dal (S), he said.

On why talks in this regard had failed, he said, “There is no question of pre-poll talks with them failing when they did not start at all.” There was no secret pact between his party and others as far as pre-poll alliance was concerned.

He, however, said that there was a need to have either a pre-poll or post-poll alliance between his party and other like-minded parties to counter the “communal” BJP.

No party would be able to get a clear majority in the coming elections. Another coalition Government was inevitable in the State. Progressive parties had to come together to keep the BJP at bay. He would extend support for any such initiative, he said.

He justified the promise made by his party in its manifesto to distribute rice at Rs. 2 a kg and provide free power to the poor.

When pointed out that the president of the Janata Dal (S), H.D. Deve Gowda, had reportedly said that it was not possible to supply power free of cost, he said that it was his opinion.

Mr. Bangarappa said that the image of the Congress had taken a beating in the absence of a credible leadership.