For the upcoming December 5 Karnataka by-polls, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Thursday has announced the names of 13 candidates. The names have declared a day after the Supreme Court upheld their disqualification but said that they can fight elections.
The BJP candidate list includes 1. Mahesh Kumatalli who has been fielded from Athani constituency; 2. Simanthagauda from Kagwad; 3. Ramesh Jarakiholi from Gokak; 4. Shivaram Hebbar from Yellapur; 5. BC Patil from Hirekerur; 6. Anand Singh from Vijayanagara; 7. K Sudhakar from Chikkaballapur; 8. Bhairathi Basavaraj from KR Pura; 9. ST Somshekhar from Yeshvanathpurs; 10. K Gopalaiah from Mahalashmi Layout; 11. MTB Nagaraj from Hosakote; 12. KC Narayanagowada from Krishnarajpet; 13. H Vishwanath from Hunsur; and M Sharavana from Shivajinagar.
Since the BJP has announced candidate for Shivajinagar, it is now certain that it will not take Roshan Baig in the party-fold. Baig was one among the disqualified MLAs who had resigned from the assembly.
These 13 MLAs from the Congress-JD(S) camp were disqualified earlier this year. Notably, 15 out of 17 Congress-JD(U) rebel MLAs joined the BJP in the presence of Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa in Bengaluru. Out of the 17 disqualified MLAs, MTB Nagaraj is already a member of the BJP, Roshan Baig did not join the BJP.
On Wednesday, the Supreme Court had upheld the decision of the then Karnataka speaker KR Ramesh Kumar to disqualify 17 rebel Congress-JD(S) MLAs under the anti-defection law but said that they can contest the upcoming by-elections in the state.
The rebel legislators were disqualified in July this year under the anti-defection law after they tendered their resignation. The Speaker had also barred them from contesting polls for the duration of the current assembly, which is slated to end in 2023.
The disgruntled MLAs then moved the apex court challenging their disqualification.They sought quashing of the order passed by the Speaker and ban imposed on them against contesting elections.
In the Karnataka elections, BJP had emerged as the largest party with 105 seats but failed to secure a majority in the 225-members assembly. The party is expecting that the by-polls on the 17 seats will boost their tally in the state.
The Assembly by-poll willbe held on December 5, while the counting of votes will take place on December 9.