In a move that could give scare to the BJP in Karnataka, Congress has decided to withdraw its candidate against the saffron party's Chief Ministerial nominee B S Yeddyurappa to ensure a direct contest with former Chief Minister S Bangarappa.
A senior Congress leader said the party wants to give the BJP a run for its money in Shikaripur and hence is planning to withdraw its nominee to support the Bangarappa, who is the Samajwadi Party candidate.
Incidentally, Yeddyurappa had won the Shikaripur seat five times in the past.
The SP had wanted the Congress to leave the Sorab seat in favour of Madhu Bangarappa, the younger son of the former Chief Minister, but Congress declined.
The seat is being represented by Kumar Bangarappa, the elder son of Bangarappa who had defeated Madhu in the last elections.
The decision to support the SP candidate comes at a time when there has been warming of ties between both the parties in the wake of BSP supremo and UP Chief Minister Maywati targetting the Congress as also the SP.
Congress will be contesting one seat less in the 224-member Karnataka Assembly as the nomination papers of its candidate in Davangare north constituency was on Wednesday rejected in a bizarre fashion.