Siddaramaiah won’t contest Assembly polls from Kolar, claims Yediyurappa

PTI, Jan 23, 2023, 4:04 PM IST

Senior BJP leader B S Yediyurappa on Monday claimed that Congress leader Siddaramaiah was allegedly playing a drama by saying he would not contest the Assembly polls from Kolar segment as announced, and may go back to his home district of Mysuru instead.

Ending speculation, Siddaramaiah had earlier this month announced that he would be contesting the polls from Kolar, if the party high command agrees.

”Today itself I will say one thing, don’t think I’m making a prediction, Siddaramaiah will not contest from Kolar for any reason, he is playing a drama and is trying to go back to Mysuru,” Yediyurappa said.

Speaking to reporters here, the former Chief Minister said the Congress legislature party leader is aware that he would face a defeat and have to go home, if he contests from Kolar.

”He is playing political circus and drama, according to me, he will not contest from there (Kolar) and may try to go back to Mysuru, if that happens we will do the strategy we need to,” he added.

Asked about talks that were doing rounds that Siddaramaiah may contest from two seats, Yediyurappa, who is the member of BJP’s top parliamentary board, said, ”I don’t know about it, it is left to their party. Let him contest from two or three seats, but going home is certain.” Amid intense speculation that he may contest from two seats like he did in 2018 Assembly polls, Siddaramaiah, a former Chief Minister, had recently made it clear that he would contest the upcoming polls from one constituency.

Siddaramaiah, not wanting to contest from Badami, his current constituency, in Bagalkote district of north Karnataka region, was looking for a ”safe seat”, and on January 9 had announced his willingness to contest from Kolar, if party permits.

In the 2018 polls, he had contested from two seats- Chamundeshwari and Badami.

As the then sitting chief minister, he lost the polls in Chamundeshwari (in Mysuru) to JD(S) G T Deve Gowda by 36,042 votes. He, however, won Badami, the other constituency from where he had contested and defeated B Sriramulu (BJP) by 1,696 votes.

Making his debut in the Assembly in 1983, Siddaramaiah had got elected from Chamundeshwari on a Lok Dal Party ticket. He has won five times from this constituency and tasted defeat thrice.

After neighbouring Varuna became a constituency in 2008 following delimitation, Siddaramaiah represented it till he vacated the seat for his son Dr Yatindra (MLA) in the 2018 polls and went back to his old constituency of Chamundeshwari.

Siddaramaiah has made it clear several times that he would not contest from Chamundeshwari anymore, and if Yediyurappa’s claims are to be believed, he may look for Varuna, in which case his son Yathindra would be left without a seat.

It is no secret that Siddaramaiah, who was Chief Minister between 2013-2018, is nursing his ambition for a second term in office, if the party wins the next Assembly polls.

With State Congress president D K Shivakumar too having similar aspirations, it has triggered a game of one-upmanship between the two leaders.

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