BANGALORE: The race of next Mayor has begun. As many as five ‘powerful’ candidates have already declared their interest. Many candidates have already contacted their patrons and are lobbying.
A well placed source in BBMP informed that this time the baton would be passed on to a candidate belonging OBC category.
Corporator A H Basavaraj, representing the Banashankari Temple Ward, has already done his groundwork and is said to be the front runner in the race for Mayorship. Basavaraj who was an Opposition leader in the BBMP Council earlier had got the documents of 72 houses costing `2 lakh each from slum board and distributed to poor from Pragathipura and Hari Colony and had executed work of `2 crore for storm water drain project and concrete roads in and around his ward.
According to sources, this ward would serve as a model for Uttarahalli and Padmanabhanagar constituencies which are considered lucky for Home and Transport Minister R Ashok. Basavaraj is a strong follower of Ashok and has his clout in both areas. He belongs to Bhovi community.
Diplomatically expressing his interest to don the role of Mayor, he said, “I have faith in our leader Ashok, I have done work and proved my mettle. They have to decide about my candidature now.” He may not have expressed his desire openly, but his other BJP colleagues have openly declared their interest in him as a candidate for Mayor’s election.
Chickpet Corporator A L Shivakumar, a close confidant of Chief Minister D V Sadananda Gowda hails from weaver community and has been RSS man who has served the party for 23 long years, is also said to be candidate. He is a first time councillor and may lose out to seniors, the sources said. However, he has not lost hope and has already planned to make a paperless administration during his tenure. When asked about his plans, he said, “I will call for a good audit system and stop the leakage of funds and try to bail out BBMP from the debt trap”.
Meanwhile, senior most BJP leader hailing from Kuruba community, Venkatesh Murthy, said that he was earlier denied the position and now would again approach the city leaders and his patron, community leader and State BJP President K S Eshwarappa. “I have won thrice from different constituencies and given BJP a clear edge many times. So I have expressed my interest this time,” asserted Murthy who represents the Katriguppe ward. Apart from these three candidates, B V Ganesh of Chamarajapet Ward and Somashekhar of Shakambari Nagar Ward have expressed their desire to don the Mayor’s role.
City BJP President Subbanna said the best and the capable OBC candidate will be selected from as mayor this time.