Congress on Thursday, April 6, released its second list of candidates for 42 seats for Karnataka Assembly elections 2023 slated to take place on May 10. Even in its second list, the grand old party has remained undecided on who will contest the polls from the prestigious Kolar Assembly seat.
The Kolar seat has become a bone of contention for the Congress after former chief minister Siddaramaiah expressed his desire to fight the state Assembly election from the constituency. Earlier in January, the former CM announced that he would contest polls from Kolar and repeatedly reiterated it. However, the party did not pay heed to Siddaramaiah's desire with the central leadership reportedly making it clear that they are not in favour of him contesting from Kolar.
On March 25, when the Congress released its first list of 124 candidates, the party fielded Siddaramaiah from his home seat of Varuna in the Mysuru district, indicating that they want him to contest from his stronghold and not from Kolar. However, even after the release of the second list of candidates on April 6, the party has not managed to find a candidate for Kolar.
It is pertinent to mention the second list was supposed to be announced on Wednesday, but the party extended its Central Election Committee (CEC) meeting to Thursday. According to sources, the delay was due to the warring factions-- one led by Karnataka Pradesh chief Congress Committee president DK Shivakumar and the other by Siddaramaiah, lobbying seats in favour of their leaders.
Though the second list has been released, there are still 58 more seats that the party has to decide on. It remains to be seen whether Congress will be forced to allow the former chief minister to fight from Kolar or it will choose some other leader. Currently, Janata Dal (Secular) leader Srinivasa Gowda represents the constituency concerned.
In its second list, the party has fielded Baburao Chinchansur, who recently resigned from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), from the Gurmitkal constituency. Prasadraj Kachan has been given a ticket from Udipi, B Shivram from Belur, Iqbal Ahmed from Tumkur City, Ravikumar from Mandya and Bheemaseb Chimmannakatti from Badami.