In a significant development, former BJP leader Tavanappa Astagi joined the Congress party on Sunday. The move comes just ahead of the state Assembly elections and is expected to have an impact on the polls in Dharwad rural constituency.
Astagi, who had earlier switched loyalties from Congress to BJP, returned to his original party in the presence of KPCC working president Satish Jarakiholi.
Tavanappa Astagi filed his nomination as an independent candidate from Dharwad rural constituency, but announced his decision to withdraw it on Sunday, the last day to withdraw nomination was April 24.
He expressed his intention to join the Congress party as a party worker, without any condition. According to sources, Astagi enjoys a good support base, and his inclusion in the Congress party is expected to boost the party’s chances in the upcoming polls.
Astagi had been aspiring for a BJP ticket from Dharwad Rural constituency but was denied the same. BJP MLA Amrut Desai was given the ticket instead. Disappointed with this decision, Tavanappa Astagi joined former CM Jagadish Shettar, who had also been denied the BJP ticket. He extended moral support to Shettar during this time. However, Astagi decided to contest as an independent candidate and did not join the Congress party when Shettar joined it earlier.
Astagi’s return to the Congress party is being seen as a significant development in the run-up to the Assembly elections. The Congress party, which has been facing a tough challenge from the BJP in this constituency, is expected to gain an edge with Astagi’s support. The move is also likely to boost the morale of Congress workers in the constituency.
Astagi joining the Congress is said to give a favorable outcome for former minister Vinay Kulkarni. Astagi has a very good supporter base and has very good connections in the constituency.
The Hubli Express is on WhatsApp now, you can join the WhatsApp group by clicking the link >>>>> https://chat.whatsapp.com/Hrmohnx3bkrEJRIv9kQsyD >>>>>>> You can follow us on Facebook @HubliExpress