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Cong 'son rise' in poll-bound K'taka?
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Coverage: Karnataka Votes
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April 15, 2008 02:41 IST

It is likely to be a 'son-rise' in the Congress in the coming Karnataka assembly elections.

For, about 35 senior leaders in the Congress have begun to flex their muscles to get tickets for their sons and nephews in order to facilitate a smooth hand over of the power baton to the next generation in the family.

The Congress, which is in the process of finalising its list of candidates for the 224 assembly constituencies, has been witnessing hectic lobbying by the senior leaders.

The leaders who want their wards to try their luck at the hustings this time are Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee president Mallikarjuna M Kharge, former chief minister N Dharam Singh, former ministers C K Jaffer Sharief, Margaret Alva, Shamanur Shivashankarappa, R L Jalappa, Chandraprabha Urs and B K Hariprasad.

The senior leaders' moves have not only angered the second-rung leadership in the party but have also left the Congress high command perplexed.

In fact, at a party meeting convened in a resort on the outskirts of Bangalore last week, AICC Karnataka in-charge Prithviraj Chauhan had shot back at the lobbyists: "How many of your children have the potential to emerge victorious?" 

The fear of the party head honchos is that it might trigger dissidence in the party in the run up to elections.

The demand for tickets to the children peaked after the Congress high command dropped hints of not allowing senior leaders to contest. The party high command wanted the state leaders to fight elections collectively and ensure victory instead of concentrating only on their constituencies. But with the state leaders jostling with each other for tickets to their children, the high command is re-thinking on the issue.

The high command is all set to give a green signal to the senior leaders to enter the fray in order to stem dissidence, party sources said. In fact, women leaders in the party had recently staged a demonstration in front of the Karntaka Pradesh Congress Committee office demanding adequate representation to women.

"Give tickets to original party workers," was the cry of the women leaders.

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