Ahead of Karnataka bypolls, BJP to expel rebel candidate Sharath Bache Gowda

The BJP hopes that it will send out a message to the party workers in Athani, Vijayanagara and other constituencies.
Sharath Bache Gowda
Sharath Bache Gowda

BENGALURU: Faced with dissent and rebellion in some Assembly constituencies that will go to polls on December 5, the ruling BJP has decided to act tough against any sort of indiscipline. The party has decided to expel the rebel candidate in Hoskote segment, Sharath Bache Gowda.

The BJP hopes that it will send out a message to the party workers in Athani, Vijayanagara and other constituencies where local leaders have expressed reservations about campaigning for the party candidates who recently switched over from Congress. Supporters of Deputy Chief Minister Laxman Savadi on Sunday staged a protest in front of his house in Athani expressing their reluctance to campaign for the official candidate Mahesh Kumtahalli. They even tried to stop him from attending an election-related preparatory meeting.

Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa, who will hit the campaign trail from Monday for the re-election of the disqualified legislators, asserted on Sunday that Sharath Bache Gowda,who has filed his nomination as an independent candidate, will be expelled from the party. “He will also be removed from the post of Karnataka Housing Board (KHB) chairman,” the CM said.

Sharath, the son of Chikkaballapur MP BN Bache Gowda, was made KHB chairman in a placatory move to make way for disqualified legislator MTB Nagaraj in Hoskote. Sources said the CM and other senior leaders of the party had tried to contact Sharath and convince him to withdraw from the contest. 

Sharath had refused to do so, and after filing nomination, he had even stated that he is willing to face any action from the party.

Reiterating his stand on backing the disqualified legislators who are now contesting elections from the BJP, the CM said, “Let me make it very clear that he (Sharath) will not win the election. MTB Nagaraj will win 100%.” On Monday, the CM will address an election rally in Hoskote, his first after the disqualified legislators joined the party.

The CM hit out at Congress, which had filed a complaint with the EC over his assurance to appoint the disqualified legislators as ministers. “They are our party candidates. What is wrong in saying we will make them ministers? It is my prerogative to appoint ministers and I will reiterate this before the voters,” he said. He dismissed the complaint filed by “Siddaramaiah and company” with the EC as one with no value.

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