Six office-bearers of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) resigned from their posts in protest of the party's decision to give a ticket to Halady Srinivas Shetty in the Kundapura constituency of Udupi district.
Kishore Kumar, BJP Vice-President of the district, was joined by party members Satish Hegde, Vittal Poojary, Srinivas Markala, Chandramohan Poojary and Ravindra Doddamane in submitting their resignations on Tuesday.
Kishore contested as the BJP candidate from Kundapura in the 2013 Assembly elections after Srinivas resigned from the party and contested as an independent candidate. Srinivas reportedly decided to resign after he was overlooked by the party for a ministerial berth. He won as an independent candidate, beating the Congress candidate, thus pushing Kishore to the third place.
The BJP, in its attempt to reverse the humiliation suffered in Kundapura, decided to re-induct Srinivas into the party earlier this year in February. When asked about his differences with the party, Srinivas said that they were "old wounds that have now healed".
On April 8, Srinivas was named as the BJP candidate from Kundapura constituency in the first list released by the party. But the party's decision has not gone down well with a section of the party's workers in Udupi.
“We have built the party from the grassroots level in the last four years. Many party workers were not happy with the decision of the high command to give a ticket to Srinivas. We had asked the party to nominate anyone but Srinivas,” Kishore said speaking to The Hindu.
However, their resignations from their posts has not been accepted and the party’s district president hopes to resolve the issue amicably. "We have not accepted the resignations of Kishore Kumar and five other party workers. We have to sit down with them, and have a discussion and everything will be resolved," said Mattaru Ratnakara Heggade, Udupi District President of the BJP.
He also added that Srinivas was selected by the BJP as he is the current MLA in Kundapura and has also won three times in the past, contesting as a BJP candidate. "It is a no-brainer that we wanted Srinivas to contest from Kundapura. That will not change," added Ratnakara.