Bengaluru: Ex-mayors, corporators angling for MLA tickets

Bengaluru: With the assembly polls round the corner, at least a dozen corporators and some former mayors are staking claim for tickets from the party high command to contest the polls. Apart from incumbent Mayor Sampath Raj, who is seeking ticket from Pulikeshinagar constituency, former corporators S.K. Nataraj. G. Padmavathi, N. Manjunath Reddy, Katte Satyanarayana too are angling for tickets from their respective parties.

Former mayor S.K. Nataraj had sought for ticket from Rajarajeshwarinagar constituency during the 2013 assembly polls, as the sitting BJP MlA M. Srinivas was removed from the party. This time too Nataraj is keen to contest from the same constituency and is likely to be pitted against Congress MLA Munirathna Naidu.

During the 2013 assembly polls, corporators Munirathna Naidu and Byrati Basavaraj contested for assembly polls from Yeshwantpur and K.R. Puram constituency respectively and won. This has inspired many sitting and former corporators to try their luck in assembly polls, sources said.

Apart from wielding clout at the party higher ups, it is a prerequisite criteria to shell out huge sums to get the ticket as well as to campaign. Post demonenisation, it has become tough for MLA ticket aspirants to shell out huge money. However, some of the aspirants have managed to spend huge sum and already begun campaigning, sources added.

Umesh Shetty, Imran Pasha, Hemalatha Gopalaiah, S. Harish and G. Ramachandra are some of the aspirants. Sources said another former mayor Katte Satyanarayana, a fifth time corporator, has been seeking the ticket for Basavanagudi constituency against the sitting MLA from the same party Ravi Subramanya. 

Former mayor and MLA ticket aspirant Nataraj told Deccan Chronicle that he has been seeking ticket for Rajarajeshwarinagar or Chikpet constituency. It would be a great help if the high command gives its nod to prepare ground by campaigning. Contesting and winning from a new constituency will be a challenge and a good experience, he said. He had won previously from Sarakki and J.P. Nagar wards.

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