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In First List, BJP Picks 189 Candidates, 52 Fresh Faces


The election notification will be issued on April 13, while the last date for filing nominations is April 20. (File photo: PTI)

The election notification will be issued on April 13, while the last date for filing nominations is April 20. (File photo: PTI)

The BJP aims to come back to power in the southern state with an absolute majority and has set a target of winning at least 150 of the total 224 seats

Karnataka Elections 2023

With less than a month left for the Karnataka elections 2023, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Tuesday announced 189 candidates after multiple rounds of meetings.

The party fielded 52 new faces in the May 10 elections and 76 are from OBCs/SC/ST communities.

ALSO READ: Karnataka Election 2023 LIVE: 52 New Faces in BJP’s First List of 189 Candidates

BJP national general secretary Arun Singh, who addressed the press conference with Karnataka in-charge Dharmendra Pradhan, said, “The party is fielding 52 new faces. In the list, 32 candidates are from OBCs, 30 SC and 16 ST. 8 candidates are women. There are 9 doctors and 5 advocates, 1 retired IAS and 1 IPS officer, 3 retired government employees, 31 post-graduates, 3 academicians and 8 social activists.”

Bigwigs To Watch Out For

CM Basavaraj Bommai will contest from the Shiggaon constituency while former deputy CM Laxman Savadi has been denied a ticket from Athani. BJP veteran BS Yediyurappa’s son BY Vijayendra is in the fray from his father’s Shikaripiur seat.

The party fielded turncoat MLA Mahesh Kumattali. Ramesh Jarkiholi had threatened the BJP that he wouldn’t contest the election if the party didn’t give his friend Mahesh Kumthalli a ticket in the elections.

Basangouda Patil, considered a critic of Yediyurappa, will seek re-election from the Vijayapura seat. State Minister B Sriramulu, who was sitting MLA from Molakalmuru, will contest from the Bellary Rural seat this time.

Revenue Minister R Ashoka will contest from two seats- Padmanabhanagar and Kanakapura. He will face Karnataka Congress president DK Shivakumar in Kanakapura.

BJP national general secretary C T Ravi will contest from his traditional Chikmagalur seat. Health Minister Dr Sudhakar K will seek election from the Chikkaballapur seat while Minister Dr Ashwathnarayan CN will be in the fray from the Malleshwaram seat.

Senior minister V Somanna, who is a sitting MLA from Govindaraja Nagar in Bangalore, will take on Congress veteran Siddaramaiah from the Varuna constituency.

The BJP fielded former Bengaluru commissioner Bhaskar Rao in Chamarajpet.

Following a meeting with BJP president J P Nadda in New Delhi, Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai earlier asserted that the party is taking “tough” decisions to create a new system, an apparent reference to the candidate selection exercise, and expressed confidence that “pro-incumbency” sentiments will help it beat off the challenge from the Congress and retain power.

Bommai, along with state party leaders, had a meeting with Nadda at the latter’s residence. Several senior party leaders, including Union minister Pralhad Joshi, national general secretaries C T Ravi and Arun Singh, were part of the meeting.

Referring to senior party leader K S Eshwarappa’s decision to not contest the elections, Bommai said it reflects the BJP’s culture of veterans making way for the younger lot and took a swipe at the Congress for giving its ticket to the 91-year-old Shamanur Shivashankarappa.

“Our leadership and values are different. To create a new system, we are taking tough decisions,” he said. Opting out of the poll was Eshwarappa’s personal decision, he added.

With former chief minister Jagadish Shettar sounding upset with the party for nudging him to keep away from polls, Bommai said he has spoken to him. Shettar wants to work more before he retires, the chief minister said.

Over reports that state party leader Laxman Savadi may cross over to the Congress, he noted that Savadi wants to contest from the Athani constituency. “We have asked him not to take extreme steps,” he said.

The BJP aims to come back to power in the southern state with an absolute majority and has set a target of winning at least 150 of the total 224 seats.

(With  PTI inputs)

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