Bengaluru: Despite appearing to strike a hard bargain with the Congress for its share of constituencies for the coming Lok Sabha poll, the JD(S) is reportedly considering either giving up three of the eight allotted to it or fielding Congress candidates from them due to lack of suitable candidates of its own.
The JD(S) is at present certain of fielding its own partymen in only four constituencies, while the fifth is likely to be a businessman, according to sources.
The problem seems to be that the party has been given the two constituencies of Udupi-Chickmagalur and Karwar on the coast where the BJP has a strong base and where it could not find winning candidates for even the Assembly poll. In 2014, the JD(S) had only one MLA from Chickmagalur and polled merely 15, 000 votes in the parliamentary poll.
Going by sources, the JD(S) had hoped to field former MP, K Jayaprakash Hegde from Udupi-Chickmagalur this poll if he quit the BJP to join it, but following his refusal, it has asked Mr Pramod Madhwaraj to file his nomination from the constituency.
In Karwar, the JD(S) is said to be considering fielding Mr Prashanth Deshpande, who had contested the 2014 poll from here. As for Vijayapura (Bijapur), the party had hoped to field Mr Ravi Rathod from it, but after his refusal to contest, it does not have a strong candidate in mind for the constituency. Although former Congress minister, Shivaraj Tangadagi, is eyeing the Vijayapura ticket, its uncertain whether the Congress will allow him to contest on a JD(S) ticket.
If sources are to be believed, candidates of all three constituencies feel they would be better off contesting on a Congress ticket rather than on a JD(S). Meanwhile, a businessman, closely associated with both the JD(S) and Congress, could reportedly be fielded in Bengaluru north....