Is Siddaramaiah eyeing Bengaluru seat? | Bengaluru News – Times of India

BENGALURU/MYSURU: The assembly elections may be two years away, but senior Congress member and former chief minister Siddaramaiah has reportedly started scouting for a ‘safe’ seat.
Siddaramaiah currently represents the Badami assembly constituency in Bagalkot district. In the 2018 assembly elections, he contested from Badami as well as Chamundeshwari in his home district of Mysuru. He lost to GT Devegowda of JD(S) in Chamundeshwari by a huge margin.

Some Congress functionaries say that the Kuruba politician has started feeling like a “fish out of water” in Badami as North Karnataka is not his natural political turf, and he wants to return to the south.
Many Congress MLAs are ready to vacate their seats for him. Siddaramaiah, according to party functionaries, is zooming in on the Chamarajpet segment, which is currently represented by his trusted lieutenant, BZ Zameer Ahmed Khan.
“I have requested Siddaramaiah to contest from Chamarajpet. I personally owe a debt to him for bringing me to Congress from oblivion and making me a minister in the previous coalition government. I will ensure his victory by a margin of 60,000 votes,” said Khan, a three-time MLA from the constituency.
If this plan materialises, Khan may contest from the neighbouring Chickpet constituency, which is currently represented by BJP’s Uday Garudachar.
“Four wards, prior to delimitation, were part of my segment and I have a good rapport with voters there,” Khan said.
There is speculation that Siddaramaiah may prefer a segment where Vokkaligas and Lingayats are not dominant. This would rule out Chamundeshwari as Vokkaligas form the largest voter group here.
Mood in the party


A section of Congress legislators and some former ministers from Bengaluru are opposed to Siddaramaiah switching constituencies, saying this will send a wrong message. “The message would be that Siddaramaiah fears losing and he is looking for a safe seat. He first moved from Chamundeshwari to Badami and is now looking to move from Badami to Chamarajpet. This will harm Congress prospects in the assembly polls,” said a senior party MLA.
Party functionaries say that Siddaramaiah is only testing waters to see if his support base within Congress is intact after DK Shivakumar’s appointment as the state Congress president.

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Sagar Biswas

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