BJP plans survey in all 224 seats to pick candidates
With assembly elections in Karnataka scheduled for a single phase on May 10, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) will conduct a survey across the 224 constituencies on March 31 to decide on candidates for the polls, Karnataka BJP general secretary and MLC Ravikumar said on Wednesday.
“On March 31, on a single day, we are holding a survey in all 224 constituencies. Over 20,000 party workers will provide their opinions from across the state. Core committee members and other members of the party will visit each constituency for three days and collect their opinions. The parliamentary board will then decide on tickets,” Ravikumar said.
The list of candidates is likely to be released in the first week of April, he added.
The BJP, led by state chief minister Basavaraj Bommai, is expected to face a high-stakes political battle as it hopes to return to power with a full majority in Karnataka.
According to leaders close to developments, the BJP aims to win the elections by providing enhanced reservation to Lingayats and Vokkaligas, the two dominant communities in the state, and its developmental pitch.
On Wednesday, Bommai said that the party is ready for the polls and expressed confidence that the party would come back to power, adding that the BJP will get a clear majority.
“I am fully confident that we will get an absolute and clear majority and the BJP government will come back to power in 2023,” he said.
Bommai also added that the frequent visits by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, home minister Amit Shah and BJP president JP Nadda helped the party in the state.
Ravikumar said that the party’s ‘Vijay Sankalpa Yatra’ has been successful, and it has received a good response in all 15 constituencies.
“There is a big difference in the mood of the people, now, than three to four months back. We are confident of getting a clear majority.”
Political analyst Chambi Puranik pointed out that the candidates’ list will be a litmus test for the BJP with the elections fast approaching.
Puranik said that giving tickets to candidates with a relatively “good image” will be an added advantage.
“They must see to it that they don’t give seats to those people against whom there are allegations or non-performance, and those who are going to be a liability to the party. The candidates’ list will be a litmus test for the BJP,” Puranik said.
“PM Modi gave a clarion call last night that the BJP is a transparent party. They would not allow corruption to destroy democracy and development. If that message has to be concretised, the best strategy would be to select candidates with minimal allegations and corruption. Otherwise, the BJP will not have any moral position against other parties,” Puranik added.