HD Kumaraswamy calls on Adichunchanagiri seer

In the midst of his campaigning for the December 5 bypolls, former chief minister H D Kumaraswamy of the JD(S) called on Adichunchanagiri Mutt seer Nirmalanandanatha Swami on Saturday. The Mutt is held in high regard by the Vokkaliga community, of which the JD(S) enjoys support.

With the election fight heating up, the JD(S) leader met the pontiff to seek his blessings. Speaking to DH, the former chief minister said it was a casual meeting. "I just had breakfast with him. There were no discussions held. I have no intention of misusing his name for vested interests."

It is not new for members of political parties to seek blessings of seers of various mutts, who wield influence over respective communities.

Meanwhile, during his campaign in Mahalakshmi Layout, Kumaraswamy had sought consolidation of members of the community. The constituency has a significant representation of the community. Speaking to reporters, he said the JD(S) was a secular party and had fielded a Lingayat candidate from Mahalakshmi Layout. "The Vokkaliga community respects people from all backgrounds. In this context, I had sought a consolidation to vote for our candidate."

Meanwhile, all three candidates in fray in Mahalakshmi Layout bypolls, also visited Nirmalanandanatha Swami on Saturday. While JD(S) has fielded Girish Nashi, the BJP has given the ticket to disqualified MLA K Gopalaiah. The Congress has nominated M Shivaraj.

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