Basaveshwara's land will never get split on caste basis: Modi

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is felicitated by presenting him a blanket during an election rally in Saravada village of Vijayapura taluk on Tuesday. DH Photo

Launching a scathing attack on the state government's decision to grant religious minority status to the Lingayat community, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday said the land of Basaveshwara will never get divided on caste basis.

Addressing a massive election rally at Sarwad in the Lingayat-dominated Vijayapura district, Modi made repeated references to the 12th century saint, philosopher and social reformer Basaveshwara and recited his Vachanas to reach out to the Lingayats, the traditional bedrock of the BJP's support base.

Modi said Basaveshwara spoke about taking everyone along, but the Congress government is trying to "divide castes....destroy everything...divide and rule, create rift between between one another. This is their game."

"Congress leaders don't know this is the land of Basaveshwara that will never get divided on the basis of caste....here one cannot create rift between brothers. They will remove the Congress and not allow the poison of casteism to spread on this land," he said, in a veiled reference to the contentious issue of religious minority tag for Lingayats.

Asserting that the people of Karnataka have decided to uproot the Congress and punish it for its wrongdoings, the prime minister said the ruling party in the state is already trying to find excuses such as faulty EVMs for the "impending" defeat in the Assembly polls.

He said that with defeat staring the Congress in the face, it is already busy trying to find excuses.

"The Congress has stopped thinking about what to tell people, what should be done till elections. They are sitting at home and offices trying to find excuses for the impending defeat... They are planning excuses including blaming EVMs," he said, addressing an election rally at Sarwad near here.

Modi said that during his election campaign over the last 7-8 days, he visited different parts of Karnataka and gathered the impression that "people of Karnataka have not only decided to remove the Congress from power, but they have also decided to punish them for five years."

Modi dismissed projections and surveys by "those sitting in air conditioned rooms" that the elections would throw up a hung Assembly.

Taking on the Siddaramaiah government over alleged corruption, Modi said: "Can you tell me the name of a single minister who is not facing allegations of corruption." The prime minister's remark came a after Siddaramaiah sent legal notices to Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah, threatening to file civil and criminal defamation suit against them for making unsubstantiated allegations against him.

Modi referred to Water Resources Minister M B Patil, who hails from Vijayapura district, and without naming him, said, "Here everyone knows about his deeds, how contracts are awarded, what is his relationship with contractors and how bundles of notes were found from the almirahs of contractors."

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Basaveshwara's land will never get split on caste basis: Modi

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