CM takes snub in his stride, goes on campaign trail for Sharief

CM takes snub in his stride, goes on campaign trail for Sharief

The Congress and the BJP on Sunday kick-started their campaigns for byelection to the Hebbal assembly seat with leaders and candidates of the two parties criss-crossing the length and breadth of the constituency throughout the day.

The Congress had Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president G Parameshwara campaigning for the party’s candidate C K Rahman Sharief while the BJP had Union Law Minister D V Sadananda Gowda canvass for its nominee Y A Narayanaswamy.

Siddaramaiah and Parameshwara launched the campaign at V Nagenahalli in the constituency and almost covered the entire assembly segment between 11 am and 7 pm, only taking an hour’s break for lunch.

The Congress high command’s decision to overlook Byrathi Suresh, Siddaramaiah’s choice and confidant, and pick former Union minister C K Jaffer Sharief’s grandson Rahman for the Hebbal seat has come as a shock to the chief minister.

However, Siddaramaiah and his supporters have no choice but to like it or lump it and work for Rahman’s victory. But the simmering discontent and divide in the Congress were evident on Sunday.

A section of Congress workers, who patiently sat through Siddaramaiah’s address at Nagenahalli, raised slogans against former minister H M Revanna and praised Byrathi Suresh soon after the chief minister left.

Revanna had opposed Suresh’s candidature and had sought a ticket for Rahman or himself.
Siddaramaiah attacked the BJP accusing it of dividing the society along communal lines for the sake of votes. Siddaramaiah and Parameshwara held road shows at Bhoopasandra, Nagashettihalli, Geddalahalli, J C Nagar Circle, Rahmath Nagar,  Ganganagar and Chamundinagar. Senior leaders D K Shivakumar, K J George, Ramalinga Reddy, Roshan Baig among others were present.

Sadananda Gowda and Narayanaswamy started their day early by meeting morning walkers at 7 am at Dollars’ Colony park and sought their support. Gowda even played badminton and cricket for some time before venturing into other pockets of the constituency seeking votes.
BJP’s Jagadish Kumar had won the Hebbal seat in the 2013 Assembly polls defeating Rahman Sharief by a margin of 5,500 votes. However, Jagadish Kumar’s death following a heart attack last December necessitated the byelection which is scheduled for February 13.

“The constituency is a BJP bastion. Jagadish Kumar was a loved and respected legislator. He and his predecessor Katta Subramanya Naidu worked for the development of the constituency. We will certainly emerge victorious here,” Gowda told reporters. Several local Congress leaders including Bise Gowda and N M Giri joined the BJP on Sunday.
DH News Service

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