Bagwan: Joined Cong to Prevent Vote Split
JD(S) candidate for Belgaum constituency Naseer Bagwan, who joined the Congress on Tuesday, said he did so on the advice of his community heads. He said the Jamat (committee of elders) had advised him to join Congress, but stay away from the fray to avoid dividing secular votes.
Another reason for leaving the JD(S) is that its leaders Deve Gowda and Kumaraswamy had sidelined him and he was not invited to the meeting of candidates of North Karnataka held in Hubli recently, he said. Bagwan, hailing from Khanapur taluk of the district which comes under Uttara Kannada constituency, said he wanted to contest from there. On the last day of filing nomination papers, he was forced to do so from Belgaum.
Meanwhile, senior JD(S) leader H D Kumaraswamy in Bangalore said he was not surprised that Naseer Bagwan joined the Congress. He told Express the party gave the ticket to Bagwan after he volunteered to contest. The JD(S) did not consider his candidature seriously.
Kumaraswamy said Congress is under the wrong impression that it will benefit from such cheap tricks. By doing this, they are helping BJP candidate win from Belgaum. “I think Bagwan will be an additional baggage for Congress,” he said.