BENGALURU:Congress' plans to have an alliance with JD(S) in the 2019 Lok Sabha election has not gone down well with the local leaders and grassroot workers of the party in the Old Mysuru region. The leaders have also made a strong pitch for former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah to contest the Lok Sabha polls from Mysuru-Kodagu constituency.
The resentment and resistance was reportedly conveyed during a series of meetings that Congress leaders held on Friday with the rank and file of the region as part of the preparations for the Lok Sabha polls. The meeting also sought feedback from local leaders on identifying suitable candidates for the polls.
Leaders from Lok Sabha constituencies of Udupi-Chikkamagaluru, Dakshina Kannada, Shivamogga, Mysuru-Kodagu, Hassan, and Mandya had interaction with AICC general secretary in-charge of Karnataka K C Venugopal, Congress Legislature Party leader Siddaramaiah, KPCC president Dinesh Gundu Rao, and working president Eshwar Khandre.
Leaders and workers from Mysuru, Hassan and Mandya reportedly expressed strong opposition to alliance with JD(S) for the Lok Sabha polls. "Though BJP is our ideological enemy, it is JD(S) which is our principal political rival in the Old Mysuru region. So poll pact with JD(S) will deliver a big blow for party's roots in the region," the local leaders reportedly argued.
Many leaders are said to have expressed concern at reports of JD(S) staking claim for Mysuru-Kodagu, Mandya, Hassan, Tumakuru, Chikkaballapur, and Kolar Lok Sabha seats. Strong opposition was received against any move to give away Mysuru-Kodagu, Hassan, Mandya and Tumakuru seats to JD(S). Many made a strong plea for Siddaramaiah to contest Lok Sabha polls from Mysuru-Kodagu to foil JD(S) from staking claim for the seat. Siddaramaiah, however, is said to have expressed his reluctance in taking the poll plunge.
Leaders from Hassan, including former minister A Manju, conveyed their opposition in giving up the constituency for JD(S). "It will almost be a wipeout for Congress in the district," Manju reportedly told
No tie-up for ULB polls
Congress and JD(S) are set to fight each other in the election for 105 ULBs on August 29. Facing opposition from its grassroot leaders and workers for an alliance with JD(S) in ULB polls, Congress has almost finalised its strategy to fight these polls on its own. Congress leadership has conveyed this message to its district and taluk leaders on Friday as Venugopal, Dinesh, Siddaramaiah, and Khandre held meetings to oversee preparations for LS polls and discussed strategy for ULB polls. They were convinced of the view that an alliance for ULB polls at the grassroot level would hurt both parties. The forced alliance at grassroot level would result in local leaders desert Congress or JD(S), who could not contest due to seat sharing. These leaders would join BJP. So, the Congress leadership has preferred to have a post-poll alliance with JD(S) to gain power in maximum ULBs, sources said.