With the Mayoral election scheduled for March 2, the BJP, which is leading the Mangaluru City Corporation Council, is in the process of finalising candidates for the offices of the Mayor and the Deputy Mayor.
The office of Mayor is reserved for a general category candidate, while the Deputy Mayor’s office has been set aside for a woman candidate from Backward Class A.
In the 60-member House, the BJP has 44 seats, the Congress 14 and the Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) has won two seats.
President of the Dakshina Kannada unit of the BJP Sudarshan Moodbidri told The Hindu that the party’s candidates will be finalised on March 1 and their names will be announced on March 2.
The party has asked the Mangaluru City South and Mangaluru City North units to submit their views on the selection of candidates by February 28.
“If the candidate for the office of Mayor is from Mangaluru City South, then the candidate for the Deputy Mayor’s office will be from Mangaluru City North and vice-versa,” he said.
Sources said that the party is likely to field a senior councillor for the office of Mayor as the selection is crucial in view of the elections to the Assembly in 2023.
Of the 60 wards, 38 wards constitute Mangaluru City South Assembly constituency and the remaining 22 wards are part of Mangaluru City North constituency.
The party wants to boost its image while preparing for the next Assembly elections. Hence, the role of the next Mayor in ensuring smooth administration matters, according to the sources.
They said that Sudhir Shetty Kannur, a three-time councillor, who now represents Kodialbail ward, and Jayanand Anchan, a two-time councillor representing Kadri (Padua), ward are the front runners for the office of the Mayor from the BJP.
Shakila Kava from Kadri (North) and Sumithra Kariya from Baikampady ward and Hemalatha Raghu Saliyan from Thiruvail ward are the other senior BJP councillors who have been elected to the council for the second time.