November 25, 2021 2:11:16 pm
Ahead of the MLC election in Karnataka, former Chief Minister and senior BJP leader B S Yediyurappa Wednesday in a speech during a rally hinted the saffron party is looking to have ties with Janata Dal-Secular JD(S).
This comes amid rumours that BJP and JD(S) are in talks to join hands for the polls. “BJP will soon decide and request JD(S) for their support in the polls,” the former Chief Minister said.
He further claimed that BJP will gain an absolute majority in the legislative council and said he is confident that the ‘BJP wave’ is still active in the state.
Yediyurappa, who is on a tour of different parts of the state from the past few days, made the announcement while addressing an election rally in favour of Shimoga-Davangere constituency candidate D S Arun. “I have confidence in BJP winning 15 of the 20 constituencies that are going to polls on December 10,” he added.
This is not the first time Yediyurappa openly asked for support of the former Prime Minister-led JD(S) party for the MLC polls. Sunday, he spoke to reporters in Belagavi and said, “The JD(S) is not fielding candidates in all the seats. I request the JD(S) to support us in constituencies where it is not fielding candidates.”
The December 10 election will be held in 20 local body regions whose existing members are set to retire in January. JD(S) has given tickets to only seven candidates for the MLC polls.
Former Chief Minister and JDS leader H D Kumaraswamy said, “As announced earlier, we have stuck to seven seats. Our aim is to win all these seven seats. Our party had won four seats in the previous elections.”
But the regional party has been maintaining that it will not have any alliance with both the national parties, while Congress leaders have been accusing the JD(S) of having an understanding with the saffron party.
Former minister and Congress leader B Z Zameer Ahmed claimed BJP and JD(S) have struck a deal for the polls and thus the latter has fielded only seven candidates. “The JDS is contesting in just seven seats instead of fielding candidates for all the 25 seats. This is suspicious, JDS is confined to just a few seats to help BJP in the polls,” Ahmed said.
Meanwhile, Kumaraswamy dismissed rumours about the tacit support to BJP and said, “A few Congress leaders are making allegations that we are the B-Team of BJP. But if you look at Congress candidates, most of them have connections with BJP.”
“In Kodagu Congress has fielded Mantar Gowda the son of BJP leader and former Hassan MLA A Manju and in Mandya they have given ticket to Gooli Gowda, who served as a personal assistant of BJP minister S T Somashekar. This shows that Congress is the B-team of BJP,” Kumaraswamy said.
Currently, BJP holds 32 seats in the 75-member house while Congress has 29 seats and JD(S) has 12 seats. BJP is hopeful of winning at least 15 seats, Yediyurappa said. The BJP is currently dependent on the JDS to push the legislation through the council and is keen to wrest total control of the upper house to set its agenda to pass new laws that are in the pipeline.
A total of 121 candidates have filed 215 nominations, according to the election commission. The last date for withdrawal of candidature is November 26 and counting of votes will take place on December 14.
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