Bengaluru: A total of 165 candidates, including 126 Independents and 9 women, are in the fray for the 15 Assembly by-elections in Karnataka on December 5, an official said on Thursday.
"At end of the last date of withdrawal on Thursday, 53 candidates withdrew their nominations, leaving 165 in the fray to contest the by-elections in 15 assembly constituencies across the state," poll official G. Jadiyappa told IANS here.
After scrutiny on Tuesday, 54 nominations of 30 candidates were rejected, resulting in 218 candidates in the contest before the withdrawal of candidates.
"Maximum withdrawals (11) were from Hunsur in Mysuru district, none from Gokak in Belagavi district, Chickallapura, Yeshwanthapura and K.R. Pete in Mandya district, and one each from Kagwad in Belagavi and Mahalakshi layout in Bengaluru west," Jadiyappa said.
Maximum candidates (19) in the fray are in Shivajinagara in Bengaluru central and minimum (7) in Yallapura in Uttara Kannada district's K.R. Pete.
The ruling BJP, the opposition Congress and the Janata Dal-Secular JD-S are contesting in all the 15 assembly segments.
Vote count is on December 9.
The by-elections have been necessitated due to the disqualification of the 14 Congress and 3 JD-S rebel legislators after they resigned from their Assembly seats in July in protest against the former coalition government's functioning.
Though then Assembly speaker K.R. Ramesh Kumar disqualified 17 rebels lawmakers on July 25-28 for reportedly defying their party whip, bye-polls in Muski (Raichur district) and R.R. Nagar (Bengaluru southwest) have been withheld due to litigation in the Karnataka High Court over their results in the May 2018 assembly elections.
The by-elections will be held in Athani, Kagwad, Gokak, Yellapura, Hirekerur, Ranibennur, Vijaynagara, Chickballapura, K.R. Pura, Yeshwanthpura, Mahalakshmi Layout, Shivajinagara, Hosakote, K.R. Pete and Hunsur.