Bengaluru: Congress stalwart and former opposition leader in Lok Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge faces a huge task of not only overseeing activities of Maharashtra Congress but also safeguarding his political career. A win or a decent show in Assembly elections to be held on October 21 may help stamp his authority in Karnataka politics but a loss would mean the end of his political career.

Congress leader and former MP VS Ugrappa agrees that the Maharashtra election is a big challenge for Kharge and also for the Maharashtra Congress unit. The leader is under the impression that Kharge's ability to speak in Marathi, Hindi and Urdu will be an advantage to chance on the reported differences creeping within the ruling Shiv Sena and the BJP.

"The Maharashtra election results will not have any bearing on Karnataka politics, however a BJP defeat would mean that their policies and slowing economy and other issues are now being realised by voters," said Ugrappa.

BJP reacts:

BJP Rajya Sabha MP Prabhakar Kore says BJP will benefit to some extent like in Karnataka with a win in Maharashtra, adding that voters who vote in favour of the Congress will not do so because of Mallikarjun Kharge but the party. His views on border issues and water-sharing disputes remain political, Kore said.

To the question on whether BJP ruling in Maharashtra, Goa, Karnataka and also at the Centre will result in a decision of the water sharing dispute in favour of Karnataka, he said," These issues are sensitive and are about that particular state and eventually a result will come out."

Echoing similar sentiments, BJP spokesperson, S Prakash opined, Mallikarjun Kharge could not help Congress’ fortune in Karnataka and he will also witness Congress being routed in Maharashtra.

"A leader who could not win his MP seat in Kalaburagi cannot win Maharashtra. His political career is over." said Prakash.