Bengaluru, Mar 17 2018 (DHNS): While the Congress is grappling with senior leaders lobbying for their children to get tickets to the contest the Assembly elections, the ruling party suffered embarrassment when a scathing tweet by former chief minister M Veerappa Moily - he later denied posting it - slammed the process of selecting candidates.
According to sources, Moily is upset with Mahadevappa following a standoff they had at the party’s state election committee meeting held here on March 14 on who should get the ticket for the Karkala Assembly constituency in Udupi district.
Moily wants his son Harsha to get the ticket, while Mahadevappa backed the candidature of Uday Kumar Shetty, a Class-1 contractor, sources said. Former MLA Gopal Bhandary is also an aspirant for the Karkala ticket.
Shetty, who is a close aide of Mahadevappa, has been nursing the Karkala constituency for the past few months. It is said that he was running a campaign to malign Harsha, which angered the Moilys.
At the state election committee meeting, Mahadevappa is learnt to have said that fielding Shetty would result in victory with no campaigning required, a view Chief Minister Siddaramaiah is learnt to have endorsed.
Before being elected to the Lok Sabha from Chikkaballapur, Moily represented Karkala several times, including when he was chief minister in the early 1990s.
The Karkala seat was not the only trigger. When Moily suggested former MLA Venkataswamy for Devanahalli (SC Reserve) seat, Mahadevappa got Chalavadi Narayanaswamy’s name added. For Mahadevapura (SC Reserve), where A C Srinivas is in the race, Mahadevappa came up with retired Bescom official N Nagesh’s name. When T Narsipura, also a SC Reserve seat which Mahadevappa represents, came up for discussion, the minister said his son Sunil Bose should be fielded. Moily and other leaders, however, insisted Mahadevappa should re-contest. This irked Mahadevappa, sources said.
The Congress high command will have to take a call on accommodating children of senior party leaders, who have been reportedly asked not to discuss the matter in public.