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Congress, JD(S) to contest Lok Sabha, Assembly bypolls together in Karnataka; KC Venugopal urges secular parties to unite against BJP

Bengaluru: The ruling Congress-Janata Dal (Secular) (JDS) coalition in Karnataka on Tuesday announced its decision to put up a united fight against the BJP in the 3 November bypolls to three Lok Sabha and two Assembly seats.

After meeting JDS leaders late on Tuesday night, All India Congress Committee (AICC) general secretary KC Venugopal said both the parties would conduct a joint campaign and fight the polls to defeat the BJP. "....we will fight the election together and make sure that all the five seats will go in favour of the Congress-JDS alliance," Venugopal, who is in charge of party affairs in Karnataka, told reporters. "Secular parties should come together for defeating the BJP is the message," he said.

File images of Congress president Rahul Gandhi and JD(S) leader HD Kumaraswamy. PTI

File images of Congress president Rahul Gandhi and JD(S) leader HD Kumaraswamy. PTI

Former prime minister and JDS supremo HD Deve Gowda, his party secretary general Danish Ali, Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) chief Dinesh Gundu Rao and former chief minister and Congress-JDS coordination committee head Siddaramaiah were present at the meeting.

The Congress would fight in Bellary and Shimoga Lok Sabha constituencies and the JDS in Mandya, its traditional stronghold in the Vokkaliga belt in the old Mysuru region. For the Assembly bypolls, the Congress will contest from Jamakhandi and the JDS from Ramanagara, which Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy had won but gave up after retaining Channapatna, the other segment bagged by him in the Assembly elections.

The Election Commission (EC) had on Saturday announced the bypolls to Shimoga, Bellary and Mandya Lok Sabha constituencies, and to Ramanagara and Jamkhandi Assembly segments. Counting of votes will be on 6 November.

Bypolls were necessitated after BJP's BS Yeddyurappa (Shimoga) and B Sriramalu (Bellary), and CS Puttaraju of JD(S) (Mandya) resigned as MPs on their election to the Assembly in May this year. Bypolls to Jamkhandi Assembly seat was caused by the death of Congress MLA Siddu Nyamagouda, while Ramanagara fell vacant after Kumaraswamy gave up the seat preferring Chennapatna.

Updated Date: Oct 10, 2018 11:52 AM

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