BANGALORE : Senior BJP members have begun lobbying for the post of ruling party leader in the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) while several Congress members are trying their luck at becoming the opposition leader.
N R Ramesh (Yediyur ward), Shivnahalli Manjunath (Shivanagar) and H Ravindra (Vijayanagar) are the main contenders in the ruling party. In the Congress camp, Mohammed Rizwan Nawab (Gurappana Palya), A R Zakir (Pulikeshinagar) and T Mallesh (Shubhash Nagar) are the aspirants.
The elections are scheduled for early next year.
BJP city unit president Subbanna told Express that the leaders would decide on the candidate in consultation with the party core committee. Meanwhile, Manjunath said he would get the post if former minister Suresh Kumar supports him.
In the last four years, Bangalore South has got preference in the selection of mayors and ruling party leaders and now, members from other areas of the city should get a chance, he said.
N R Ramesh said, “I helped save BBMP property. I should get credit for my work. The Palike also benefited by framing guidelines for laying optical fibre cables.”
H Ravindra, who is a three-time corporator, said, “I worked during the 2008 elections for R Ashok and for H N Ananth Kumar in the run-up to the 2009 General Elections. Considering my work to the party, I am hoping that it will choose me.”
Ashok told Express that the party would select its candidate keeping the Council elections in mind. “H N Ananth Kumar and D V Sadananda Gowda are in Delhi and once they return we will decide,” he said. However a source close to him said Manjunath is being considered for the post as he is a Vokkaliga.
In the Congress, Rizwan Nawab likely has the backing of Bangalore District in-charge Minister Ramalinga Reddy, Food and Civil Supplies Minister Dinesh Gundu Rao and opposition leader in BBMP Manjunath Reddy.
T Mallesh is said to have the support of KPCC president G Parameshwara.
Rizwan Nawab said he has no problem if Manjunath Reddy continues as the opposition Leader. However, he said, if the party decides to change its candidate, then the person should be from a minority community.
Minister Reddy said, “We will take a call in consultation with city MLAs from the party and choose a candidate who can speak well in the Council.”
A source close to Reddy said clearance was given to declare Rizwan as the candidate, and the minister, Manjunath Reddy, Rizwan and Siddapura ward corporator met Siddaramaiah in this connection recently.