The BJP, on April 11, released the first list of its 188 candidates for Karnataka polls, and former Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa’s son B Y Vijayendra will be contesting from his father’s Shikaripura assembly segment.
The list has 52 new faces and eight women, while Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai will contest from his traditional Shiggaon constituency.
Union minister Dharmendra Pradhan, along with BJP general secretary in-charge of Karnataka Arun Singh, announced that State Minister V Somanna would contest against Congress stalwart Siddaramaiah from Varuna.
Similarly offering another challenge, R Ashok will contest from Kanakpura against Congress State President D K Shivakumar. In fact, R Ashok will contest from two seats.
BJP National general secretary C T Ravi will contest from Chikmagalur.
Among others, State Minister B Sriramulu will sweat it out at Bellary Rural seat, and key leaders Ramesh Jarkiholi and Govind M Karjol will contest from Gokak and Mudhol, respectively.
Arun Singh said that the party had given tickets to several young faces, and the first list includes 32 candidates belonging to the OBC, and the list has 30 candidates from the Scheduled Caste community.
The Congress party is facing divisions and groupism while JD-S is a sinking ship, he said.
The BJP leaders said that the party had done an elaborate exercise of feedback before deciding on party candidates and expressed confidence of the party again forming Government in the Southern State.
The polling will take place for 224 assembly seats on May 10, and the counting of votes will take place on May 13.
The BJP list has 16 candidates from the ST community. The list has 31 PhD holders and 31 candidates who have post-graduate degrees.
After the list was released, Karnataka CM Basavaraj Bommai took to Twitter and said, “There is an atmosphere in favour of double engine Government rule all over the State, and this time we are going to form an absolute majority Government”.
The party has also given tickets to a retired IAS and an IPS officer. Bhaskar Rao, a former IPS and Bengaluru Commissioner, will contest from the Chamrajpet constituency.
C P Yogeshwar will fight former Chief Minister Kumaraswamy from Channapatna, but former Deputy Chief Minister Lakshman Savadi missed a ticket.
The BJP leaders have exuded confidence of winning the polls in Karnataka.
One saffron party leader said, “From BJP point of view, Prime Minister Narendra Modi wants to work for the country and the Prime Minister is backing the growth and development story of India. But here we have the Congress party whose only aim and ambition now is to back Rahul Gandhi even on trivial and controversial issues”.