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History repeats in Karnataka while BJP carves new history

By HindusthanSamachar | Publish Date: May 18 2018 1:02PM
History repeats in Karnataka while BJP carves new history
By Manohar Yadavatti Bengaluru,18 May(HS):The outcome of 2018 general elections in the state has again been a repeat of 2008 results wherein also the voters preferred a fractured verdict. Even ten years back the situation was almost similar but for half a dozen candidates making it and coming to the rescue of the Bharatiya Janata Party. Karnataka continues to adhere to its electoral history of voting out the party in power since 1989. At the same time the Bharatiya Janata Party has now created new history as it is again for the first time that the same party governments are in the state and centre. The floor test for deciding the majority of the party in power has been scheduled on Saturday 19 May by the Supreme Court when reports last came in. All these things look rosy to hear about but what about the perennial woe the saffron party continues to undergo for not being able to muster comfortable majority on its own? Well there are not just one or two but multiple reasons for the same. On the face of it BS Yeddyurappa appears to be all powerful BJP leader belonging to the significantly numerical and major dominant Lingayat community. He also happens to be the only leader at present acceptable to all the communities. But at the same time you have Vokkaligas who constitute another socially forward community almost on par with Lingayats while Kurubas or shepherds caste to which Siddaramaiah belongs to have emerged as a major political force. The Kurubas are also the largest in numbers among the backward communities. Lingayats have been anti Congress since 1969 when the Indian National Congress split into R and O groups. They have been the backbone of Congress (Organisation) or Samstha Congress since inception. They switched their loyalty towards Janata Party when Congress (O) merged with it in 1977 and to Janata Dal later. Once Bharatiya Janata Party came into being after the failed experiment of Janata Pariwar in the centre the Lingayats slowly started tilting towards it and in a matter of few decades became a bastion of the party. So in that way BJP triumphing in Mumbai and Hyderabad Karnataka regions of the Northern Karnataka is no big surprise. Thanks to the decisive politics of Siddaramaiah in dividing the community over the Veerashiva-Lingayat separate minority religion status and over appeasement of AHINDA communities the results were as expected. Along with the Northern region even Central and Coastal belts favored the BJP in a big way. Then where did it fail? The party looked overconfident in Bengaluru city and rural where there are 28 constituencies. Thanks to the apathy of net savvy Bengalureans who are more active to react on flimsy issues never thought it as their duty to come and vote. The dip in polling percentage as low as 48 on an average was enough for the Congress to turn emerge victorious in most of the seats while the Janata Dal Secular which was assumed to be written off managed to snatch a couple of seats. Apart from Bengaluru the whole of old Mysuru region looked like the BJP handing it over to the JDS and Congress. Perhaps the homework of the party in both these areas made it stumble like never before leading to the present uncertain situation. Just like Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s last minute whirlwind tour across the state helped the wave swinging towards the party perhaps a road show in Bengaluru could have made a big difference in the results. Unlike Gujarat where the urban areas are out and out for the BJP and the rural areas the other way round for the Congress there’s nothing like that situation in the state. On the other hand the BJP has been successful enough in penetrating deep into the rural pockets of the state as well. Though SM Krishna joined the party it didn’t make any impact on the whole of old Mysuru region forget Mandya, his home district which returned all the seven seats to the JDS. If the party had made best use of his services and entrusted the responsibility of winning in a minimum of dozen seats the party would have been a beneficiary in at least a handful of them. The tussle between BS Yeddyurappa with HN Ananthkumar, BL Santosh, Phralhad Joshi, KS EShwarappa among many others who don’t see eye to eye had the disastrous effect on seat distribution. If BS Yeddyurappa did what not to ensure the maximum number of tickets to all those with him in his KJP the others saw that whomever they preferred also got them in equal numbers. But as an immediate effect the party became a casualty in the process. As it’s high time for the party to gear up for the ensuing general elections to the Lok Sabha next year it’s also equally important to ensure that the same blunders don’t continue to persist. Hindusthan Samachar/Manohar Yadavatti
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