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Lok Sabha elections over in Karnataka, parties now prepare for two assembly bypolls

Chincholi fell vacant when Congress lawmaker Umesh Jadhav resigned in March and joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) the same month while the by-poll to Kundgol was necessitated after Congress lawmaker C S Shivalli passed away last month.

india Updated: Apr 26, 2019 10:55 IST
Vikram Gopal
Vikram Gopal
Hindustan Times, Bengaluru
bjp,congress,karnataka
The assembly bypolls are crucial for the Congress as another rebel lawmaker, Ramesh Jarkiholi, has threatened to resign.(PTI)

Bypolls to two assembly seats – Chincholi and Kundgol – will be held in Karnataka on May 19.

Chincholi fell vacant when Congress lawmaker Umesh Jadhav resigned in March and joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) the same month. Jadhav was later named as the BJP’s Lok Sabha candidate from Gulbarga against Congress’s Mallikarjun Kharge. The by-poll to Kundgol was necessitated after Congress lawmaker C S Shivalli passed away last month.

The Congress is likely to field Shivalli’s widow, Kusuma, from Kundgol and Subhash Rathod, a former BJP leader, from Chincholi, which is reserved for Scheduled Caste candidates.

The BJP is likely to pick Jadhav’s brother, Ramachandra, for Chincholi. In Kundgol, it is likely to field SI Chikkanagoudar.

A Congress leader said the party is confident about retaining Kundgol as Kusuma would benefit from a sympathy wave. “In Chincholi, we have a tough fight…”

The BJP is confident Jadhav will help the party win the seat he won just last year. “Though the margin of defeat was very small in the previous election in Kundgol, a sympathy wave will be hard to battle,” a BJP leader said.

The bypolls are crucial for the Congress as another rebel lawmaker, Ramesh Jarkiholi, has threatened to resign.

The Congress-Janata Dal (Secular) government has 117 lawmakers. The BJP has a support of 104 lawmakers. It is nine short of the 113-seat majority mark in the 224-member assembly.

First Published: Apr 26, 2019 10:54 IST