Former Infosys CEO and UIDAI chairman Nandan Nilekani on Friday admitted that he was keen on taking the political plunge and is looking at the prospect of being given an election ticket by the Congress.
Fielding questions at a college event in Bangalore on the possibility of contesting elections, Nilekani said he was “interested in doing something on the political front because India needs a lot of change. Given a ticket, yes I will contest,” he said. Asked which party was on his mind Nilekani said: “Congress has been very kind and supportive of me and my ideas.”
Nilekani said that it is necessary to make democracy interactive and participative like what the Aam Aadmi Party is doing but not to the extent of conducting SMS referendums on issues like Kashmir.
The possibility of Nilekani taking the electoral plunge as part of a Congress initiative to bring new faces in the Lok Sabha polls has been actively discussed since September last year. In fact, Nilekani had met KPCC chief G Parameshwara and showed interest in contesting from the Bangalore South constituency.
Following meetings of the state election committee, the KPCC chief however said that Nilekani was not being considered at the state level as a candidate for the constituency since he was not a primary member of the Congress party and had not worked in the constituency for a stipulated period of time.
Though Nilekani’s name does not figure in the Congress shortlist, there is a provision in the Congress constitution for the AICC president to veto the state decision, Parameshwara had said.
The Congress party has shortlisted candidates to be screened by an AICC committee in January on the basis of feedback from local MLAs and other elected representatives. The list of candidates for the 28 Lok Sabha seats from Karnataka shortlisted by the state election committee will go before an AICC screening committee and a central election committee for a final decision.