Source The Hindu
|All major parties have fielded their nominees here|
Two-time MLA Ramesh L. Kudachi is the Janata Dal (S) candidate
Sait is the first-ever Muslim to be fielded by the Congress in Belgaum (Belgaum North)
Belgaum: All eyes are on Belgaum North constituency, where all major parties have fielded their candidates.
But what makes it more interesting is the presence of MES rebel Ramesh Gangaram Pawale and Rashtriya Hindustan Sena candidate Vilas Ramachandra Pawar. The people of the constituency are equally curious about the prospects of Janata Dal (Secular ) candidate and two-time MLA Ramesh L. Kudachi, who quit the Congress after being denied the ticket.
Mr. Kudachi told The Hindu that he had no option but to quit as he had been sidelined in the Congress.
He joined the Janata Dal (S) and entered the poll fray to show that the Congress was “weak” without him in the party.
His presence has become a thorn in the flesh of Congress candidate Feroz Nooruddin Sait.
However, the realisation of the objective of Mr. Kudachi, who belongs to the Kurbar community, depends largely on the number of votes he would get from the Muslim community, which supported him in the 1999 and 2004 elections.
But, Mr. Kudachi has not lost hopes completely and feels that a section of Marathi-speaking voters would support him.
Mr. Kudachi was the first-ever Kannada speaking candidate to defeat the MES in the erstwhile Belgaum City Assembly constituency.
Mr. Sait is the first-ever Muslim to be fielded by the Congress in Belgaum (Belgaum North).
The BJP is hoping to do well in Belgaum North.
Though its candidate and former chairman of Belgaum Urban Development Authority Shankargowda Patil is considered relatively weak when compared to others in the fray, party leaders say the situation is fast turning in his favour.
In addition to support from his own Lingayat community, the party expects the support of all Kannada organisations.
Though the former Mayor and MES candidate Vijay Pandurang More is regarded as a “good person” by all communities in the light of his work, his caste (SC) has turned out be an obstacle for him.
Many feel that all Marathas, who are in substantial numbers in the constituency and are traditional supporters of MES, may not support Mr. More.
But, he too is confident that these voters and a section of the Kannada and Urdu-speaking voters would support him.
Efforts of the MES central leadership have failed to convince Mr. Pawale to withdraw from the fray.
Also, Mr. More’s problems have only aggravated due to the presence of Mr. Pawar, who is also a Maratha.
In the last elections, Mr. Pawar contested on the BJP ticket and lost to Mr. Kudachi by a margin of 1,017 votes.
Interestingly, the Bahujan Samaj Party’s candidate, whose profile is much better than any other candidate in the fray, is also hopeful of doing well.