Mandya Assembly constituency, which has attracted the attention of the entire State, yesterday saw the reel-life Rebel Star Ambarish, who is the official Congress candidate for Mandya, greeting his arch rival and ‘real’ rebel Congress candidate Ravindra Srikantaiah, who is now contesting as an independent candidate from Mandya and Srirangapatna constituencies following cancellation of Congress party ticket from Srirangapatna at the behest of Ambarish.

Ravindra Srikantaiah, who was replaced by the Congress party high command at the last moment, filed his nomination as Congress rebel candidate from Srirangapatna constituency also. The new Congress candidate from Srirangapatna is Lingaraju.

Ambarish, who reportedly bears a grudge against Ravindra, whom he holds responsible for his defeat in the 2008 Assembly elections from Srirangapatna, is said to have exerted pressure on the party high command to withdraw the party ticket earlier given to Ravindra Srikantaiah.

Ravindra Srikantaiah, upset over this attitude of Ambarish, has entered the electoral battle by contesting as a rebel Congress candidate from both Mandya and Srirangapatna. Ravindra, who showed no signs of entering the electoral fray until yesterday afternoon, surprised everyone by filing his nomination as rebel Congress candidate from Mandya as well.

Ravindra, who arrived at the nomination centre along with hundreds of supporters at around 2.30 pm, filed his nomination even as his betenoire Ambarish was walking out of the centre after filing his nomination.

Ambarish, on seeing Ravindra, shook hands with him at the venue much to the surprise of the followers of both the candidates.

It is to be seen whether Ravindra will be successful in denying victory to Ambarish in Mandya.

Courtesy : Star Of Mysore