He said the Congress was "forced" to talk about Modi because it felt he was a "dangerous man" due to his "dictatorial" tendencies.

"The way he has hijacked BJP completely. The way he has sidelined senior leadership, almost virtually overnight. And a one-man or a two-man show that he is trying to run the party with self and Amit Shah, we have seen the danger in this," Chavan said.

"Therefore, when a man brings in a one-man politics to BJP, the danger is that he will bring the one-man politics to (the country's) governance also," he said.

"Therefore, we have to warn the country against the dangers of the man, like how he behaved during the Gujarat riots, about how he misused police authority ostensibly for personal purpose. The highest organ of the police system was directed to chase and trail and snoop on an individual. This shows the disregard for norms and propriety. We can imagine the result if such a man is allowed to come to the top," he said.

"We don't know how the 'Gujarat model' will impact on the policies at the central government level and how a coalition government will be run if at all BJP gets invited to form the new government," the senior Congress leader said.

Gujarat saw more growth during the earlier Congress regime, Chavan said, adding there was need to debunk Narendra Modi's claim about the "so-called highest rate of growth" in Gujarat under his rule.

Joshi is confident of continuing the winning spree. His campaign is focused on highlighting the work he has done for the constituency over the years.

Joshi says, "I am sure I will win the Dharwad Lok Sabha seat for the third consecutive term as I have done a lot of developmental work here over the last decade. Also the BJP has regained its strength in Dharwad after KJP's merger with it and Sreeramulu's return to the party."

KJP, led by former Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa, has become part of BJP and the party expects the Lingayat community to remain with it.

The constituency has about four lakh Lingayat voters, a fact that has prompted the Congress to plump for a Lingayat candidate, who also enjoys good support base in his community.

Unlike the Congress candidate, Joshi is comfortable on this pitch with a vast network of party workers. Muthalik is eyeing the hardcore Hindu votes in his own pockets of influence.

Kulkarni was aspiring to become a minister but agreed to contest following pressure from Chief Minister Siddaramaiah. Congress workers appear confident and are focusing on welfare schemes launched after the party came to power in Karnataka in the May Assembly polls last year.

"I will end the nearly two-decade BJP rule in Dharwad constituency," says Kulkarni.

The JDS with not much influence to boast of has fielded Hanumantappa Bankapur, a former union leader.

(Agencies)

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