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Bangarappa says he wants to contest on Cong ticket

January 09, 2009 18:47 IST
Last Updated: January 09, 2009 19:18 IST

Amidst speculation about his re-entry into the Congress, former Karnataka Chief Minister S Bangarappa, who was critical of AICC president Sonia Gandhi's [Images] foreign origin in the past, today said that it is no longer a contentious issue for him.

"Sonia Gandhi had sacrificed the Prime Ministerial post and has the capability to manage the Congress and also the political situation in the country," Bangarappa, now the state secretary of the Samajwadi party, told reporters in Bengaluru [Images].

He said "the foreign origin issue of Sonia Gandhi is no longer an issue".

Bangarappa said he wished to contest the coming Lok Sabha elections from Shimoga constituency on a Congress ticket. "If the party gives me a ticket, I will do it", he said.

Elected on a BJP ticket from Shimoga in the 2004 General elections, Bangarappa quit BJP and his Lok Sabha membership, joined SP and successfully contested the 2005 by-election on a "cycle" symbol. But he was defeated in the 2008 assembly elections from Shikaripura against B S Yeddyurappa of the BJP.

A Backward Class leader and a party hopper, Bangarappa remarked that "changes happen for personal or political reasons. It is not an uncommon thing in politics".

Bangarappa, who has been knocking on the doors of the Congress, which he quit thrice and returned as many times,said

SP general secretary Amar Singh [Images] has already stated that the party has no objection to his joining the Congress. The SP currently supports the UPA government.

Sources close to Bangarappa say their leader has already launched a campaign in his constituency 'after he became sure that the Congress would admit him.'

The Shimoga unit of the Congress has passed a resolution favouring Bangarappa's admission into the party and the state KPCC has endorsed it.

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