At least a dozen of the disqualified may get BJP ticket

The party is facing rebellion in Kagawad and Hoskote Assembly constituencies

Of the 15 constituencies going to bypolls, at least 12 rebels who are disqualified and set to join the BJP will in all likelihood get BJP ticket, while the party is considering fielding other candidates in three constituencies.

Party sources claimed that there is no clarity on Hunsur, Shivajinagar and Ranebennur yet. The BJP high command is likely to announce the list of candidates by Thursday evening, said Arvind Limbavali, general secretary of the State BJP.

The BJP sounded the poll bugle on Wednesday, soon after the Supreme Court verdict, announcing leaders in-charge of the bypolls in individual constituencies. The party will be led by a Minister in each constituency — all three Union Ministers from the State and prominent State Ministers, including the three Deputy Chief Ministers, have been put in charge.

The BJP’s core committee meeting held on Wednesday evening cleared the names of 12 rebels for the party’s ticket for the bypolls. It is learnt that A.H. Vishwanath had expressed his unwillingness to contest the bypolls and the party has assured that they will make him an MLC and a Minister. While Mr. Vishwanath is lobbying for ticket for his son for Hunsur constituency, C.P. Yogeshwar, a close aide of the Chief Minister, who played a key role in wooing the rebels, is leading the race, sources said.

Party leaders in the core committee expressed reservations to give ticket to R. Roshan Baig from Shivajinagar and R. Shankar from Ranebennur. “Other candidates are being considered in the two constituencies and it also means rehabilitation of the two rebels are being explored,” a senior leader said.

Mr. Baig facing allegations of corruption in the multi-crore IMA scam has faced stiff resistance from the party high command. While he has been lobbying for a ticket for his son Ruman Baig, the party was not keen on him as well, sources said. Nirmal Kumar Surana, Katta Subramanya Naidu and BJP councillor Saravana are leading the race for ticket, sources said.

The search is also on for a suitable candidate for Ranebennur, sources said. While the State BJP unit has announced Deputy Chief Minister Laxman Savadi to be in charge of bypolls in Athani and Kagawad constituencies along with K.S. Eshwarappa, effectively clearing party ticket in Athani to Mahesh Kumathalli, Mr. Savadi is still lobbying for ticket in his home constituency, sources said.

Switching party

Raju Kage, a former BJP MLA from Kagawad, has announced that he will join the Congress. Sources said Ashok Pujari, defeated BJP candidate from Gokak, is also toying with the idea of joining the Congress. Meanwhile, rebellion from within the BJP ranks in at least two constituencies has turned into a headache for the party. Sharath Bache Gowda, son of Chickaballapur BJP MP B.N. Bache Gowda, is all set to contest as an Independent in Hoskote, to whom the JD(S) announced its support on Wednesday.

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Printable version | Jul 5, 2020 6:19:53 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/at-least-a-dozen-of-the-disqualified-may-get-bjp-ticket/article29965939.ece

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