Karnataka Elections: PM Modi can’t afford loss in southern India

Modi, who once ridiculed Congress President Rahul Gandhi for visiting Dalit families and sharing meals with them, is now desperately trying to retain and expand the Dalit community’s support for the party in the Karnataka elections and the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
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The stakes are high for both Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party in Karnataka assembly elections as well as for President Rahul Gandhi, who is seeking a big win after Punjab verdict and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who desire to register BJP win in South India.

The campaigning for Karnataka assembly polls was similar to the elections at the national level as there were allegations and counter allegations and this time as well PM Modi failed to present any roadmap on how the BJP will solve the problems of the people of the state.

Corruption scams under Modi’s rule 

When allegations of corruption are leveled against his cabinet, PM  Modi does not act neither initiate probe as there are  allegations of Arun Jaitley’s involvement in the Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA) scam, Indian Premier League czar Lalit Modi was extended “humanitarian assistance” by external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj with emergency papers for travel in June 2015, and Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje gave him a testimonial,Chhattisgarh’s CM Raman Singh’s linkage with the PDS/NAN scams, Madhya Pradesh’s CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan’s connection with the DMAT and Vyapam scams,Rajasthan’s CM Vasundhara Raje’s involvement in the Lalit Modi and mining scams, alleged multi-fold increase in the business fortunes of BJP national president Amit Shah’s son, Jay Shah.

While Vijay Mallya defrauded state-run banks of Rs 9,000 crore has also escaped and Nirav Modi looted the taxpayer’s money and escaped.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is unaware of regional issues and the problems being faced by the people of Karnataka such as Water, development, infrastructure and employment and rather has repeatedly invoked BR Ambedkar to woo Dalits and said that new India is Ambedkar’s India.

Modi suddenly realized the need for Dalit votes and asked BJP leaders to visit homes of Dalits and assure them of their safety. Obviously, BJP including PM must be living in misconception that worst memories of atrocities witnessed by them (Dalits, SC/ST, OBCs) at the hands of upper-caste over cow slaughtering, attending a garba performance etc will fade away from the minds of the discriminated people.

In March, a group of “influential people” allegedly gouged out an elderly Dalit’s eye and beat him to death in Bihar’s
Nawada district. The Dalits were being oppressed by people with connections in the corridors of power.

Modi, who once ridiculed Congress President Rahul Gandhi for visiting Dalit families and sharing meals with them, is now desperately trying to retain and expand the Dalit community’s support for the party in the Karnataka elections and the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.

Modi and his Bharatiya Janata Party leaders have been propagating irrelevant issues -urging people to opt for startups including Pakora shops, rolling out dozens of schemes, continuously laying foundation stones,showing nationalism by rewriting the history textbooks in which references to Jawaharlal Nehru have been deleted from the new social science textbook for Class VIII but regional issues, as well as problems of the people, remain untouched .

ACtually, BJP is engaged in criticising Congress President including defaming Rahul Gandhi, using the social media, optics and PM Modi is behaving more like an actor rather than a leader while addressing people at rallies.

PM Modi and the BJP have not rolled out any roadmap to resolve Lingayat, Mahadayi issues unemployment, farmers condition that would have considerable influence on the outcome of polls.

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and his Cabinet have recommended that the Lingayat/Veerashaiva community be declared a ‘religious minority’, therefore this move will give Congress a boost. Both the parties are at loggerheads on the issue to celebrate Tipu Jayanti as BJP termed Tipu Sultan “as an anti-national”.

Rahul Gandhi smells some understanding between JD(S) and the BJP as Saffron party have chosen weak candidates where JD(S) has nominated its strong candidates against Congress. But if Congress wins the elections JD(S) might ally with it.

As Karnataka voters head to the polling station to exercise their right on Saturday and most opinion polls foresee a hung state assembly, youth are likely to weigh the tall promises including pledges to create 2 crore jobs annually and to deposit 15 lakhs in every account by Prime Minister Narendra Modi while making their decision.

Blog: By Arti Bali,
arti

(Senior Journalist)

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