New Delhi: Congress is apparently having a tough task in finalising the names of candidates for the May 5 assembly elections in Karnataka.
"The Congress victory in the recently-concluded urban body polls has created a huge demand for tickets from the party as there is a clear impression that we are coming to power," said a senior party leader.
"There are a number of potential candidates, who will have to be denied tickets. We have to be mindful of the impact," the leader said, requesting anonymity.
There are about a dozen former BJP MLAs, who are now hopeful of getting tickets from Congress which is finding it difficult to accommodate them as it has its own pack of assertive leaders in these seats.
These BJP MLAs resigned at the spur by one or the other regional satraps of Congress, who seems to be pushing hard to ensure that they get tickets.
Yesterday, state Youth Congress president Rizwan Arshad offered to resign in protest against denial of ticket from Muslim-dominated Narasimharaja assembly constituency in Mysore.
However, Youth Congress chief Rajiv Satav, remained non- committal on the Rizwan resignation issue only saying, "Youth Congress of Karnataka has put requests for tickets for a few. The official list of candidates is yet not out and we are hopeful that the central leadership of the party will consider our demands. There is no formal announcement."
Sources said the party preferred sitting MLA from the area Tanveer Sait there as it was felt that denial of ticket to him could affect Congress' prospects in a number of other seats in this region as his family wields considerable influence there.
Rizwan's father was also a Congressman but had later joined the H D Devegowda's Janta Dal (Secular).
Apparently mindful that the regional heavyweights could affect the overall ticket distribution plan, Congress central leadership set up a high-level committee headed by A K Antony with senior Union ministers as its members, first of its kind for any assembly election.