New district in-charge minister faces challenges

JD(S) leaders meet Sa Ra Mahesh, who has been newly appointed as the Kodagu District In-charge, in Bengaluru.

As Tourism Minister Sa Ra Mahesh has been appointed as the Kodagu district in-charge, expectations are rife within party cadres as well as the general public, on the new district-in-charge handling the peculiar issues in Kodagu.

The district is also a strong fortress of BJP, which poses challenges before the minister as there is a need to address the political issues tactfully.

Congress party has failed to establish its position in the district even though the party is an ally in the coalition government. The only elected member from Congress party from the district is MLC Veena Achaiah.

On the other hand, JD(S) is hit by rebel politics. Recently, there has been a demonstration before the chief minister, against the district JD(S) President Sanket Poovaiah.

Though Poovaiah tendered his resignation following the incident, the same has not been accepted.

One faction of JD(S) has been demanding for the appointment of a new district president.

Rumour has it that former minister B A Jeevijaya has requested party veterans to appoint his son for the party’s district president’s post, while another faction has been persuading Sanket to withdraw his resignation.

The name of minister K J George had surfaced for the position of the district-in-charge. However, the chief minister finalised the name of Sa Ra Mahesh, after George’s name was ruled out by some.

Sa Ra Mahesh had visited Madikeri in the second week of June and had said that he would visit the district often, hinting towards his appointment as the district-in-charge.

Tourism development

Tourism in Kodagu is in need of overall development. The district attracts around 18 lakh tourists annually. Incidentally, Kodagu district in-charge minister Sa Ra Mahesh holds the tourism department portfolio. This has exalted hope among people about the development of a number of tourist spots in Kodagu.

Many tourist destinations in Kodagu are facing lack of facilities such as road connectivity. Meanwhile, the problem of illegal homestays continues to haunt the district.

During his earlier meeting with officials, the minister had warned of initiating stern measures against the owners of illegal homestays. However, there is no progress in the registration of homestays.

Heavy rain has caused havoc in the district, causing loss of property. The roads are badly hit. Though the fund towards relief measures have been released after the visit of the chief minister, the work has not gathered momentum.

The private bus stand has not been shifted and there are allegations about the poor quality of construction.

As the news on the appointment of the district in-charge ministers broke in, JD(S) leaders visited the official residence of Sa Ra Mahesh in Bengaluru and discussed the problems in the party and in the district.

The delegation which met the minister in Bengaluru comprised of JD(S) District President Sanket Poovaiah, JD(S) Propaganda committee President K M B Ganesh, JD(S) State Vice President M M Sharif, District spokesperson Adil Pasha, Madikeri constituency backward castes committee President N C Sunil, district Youth JD(S) General Secretary K G Nasir, Senior Vice President D P Bhojappa, Virajpet City President P A Manjunath and Madikeri city minority cell President N A Ibrahim.

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New district in-charge minister faces challenges

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