BENGALURU/BELAGAVI: Denial of Lok Sabha ticket to Tejaswini, wife of former minister late HN Ananth Kumar, by BJP top brass has not gone down well with many party leaders in the state, including its MLAs. They have questioned the logic behind the move and sought explanation from the party leaders. BJP has named Tejasvi Surya, advocate and party spokesperson, as its candidate for Bangalore South.
The party bosses must take local leaders into confidence before taking such decisions, otherwise it will have a political fallout for the party, feel several leaders.
While senior leader and eight-time MLA Umesh Katti said it is unfair of the party to have denied Tejaswini the ticket, his brother and former MP Ramesh Katti wondered as to what made the party ignore her, who would have won the election comfortably. Umesh Katti’s statement against the party’s decision comes at a time when the BJP is unwilling to allot a ticket to his brother Ramesh from Chikkodi Lok Sabha seat.
Speaking to TNIE, Ramesh Katti said Tejaswini was a fit candidate to represent the BJP in Bangalore South but the party fielded another leader. Given the huge contribution of late Ananth Kumar to the constituency and the party, Tejaswini would have easily romped home, he added. “Tejasvi’s uncle Ravi Subramanya is Basavangudi MLA. The party bosses said they will not encourage family politics. How could they give him the ticket? asked party MLA V Somanna, Ananth Kumar loyalist.
Why weren’t we taken into confidence, questions BJP leader Somanna
Somanna said, “Why was Tejaswini Ananth Kumar dropped unceremoniously? She had opened a party office and started campaigning. At least respect the legacy of former minister Ananth Kumar whose contribution is very great. He passed away a few months ago and is this how we pay him tribute?”
Somanna said the BJP core committee headed by State party chief BS Yeddyurappa had sent only Tejaswini’s name. “Why was it not considered? If they changed it, why were we not taken into confidence? he questioned. Somanna who sounded upset said, “I do not want to do `Atmavanchane’ (against one’s wishes) by pretending to support Tejasvi Surya, BJP candidate from Bangalore South. I want to know why the central leadership overlooked her.’’
He said he was only voicing the concerns of the common man. “How do we know this will not happen again to others, is there no accountability?’’ he asked.Somanna had been unhappy with the party’s decision, especially considering they did not give his son Arun Somanna a ticket to contest from Arsikere in Hassan in the assembly elections last year.