Sakleshpur (K’taka): Taking on JD(S) in their home turf of Hassan district, Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Monday told the people that voting for the regional party means backing the Congress, as he appealed them to choose BJP in the May 10 Assembly polls in Karnataka.
He urged the voters to ensure that BJP candidates win and thereby strengthen the hands of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
“You made JD(S) win in the last election, but what happened at the end, they sat along with Congress. So voting for JD(S) means voting for Congress. Do you want to vote for Congress?” Shah asked.
Addressing the gathering after a mega road show here, he said, “If you don’t want your votes to go failed, cast it directly to BJP and our candidates.”
Hassan is the home district of JD(S) patriarch and former Prime Minister H D Deve Gowda and the party in 2018 Assembly polls had won in six out of seven segments other than the Hassan Assembly seat, which BJP’s Preetham Gowda had won, making it the first ever win for the saffron party in the Vokkaliga dominated district in recent times.
Senior JD(S) leader and sitting MLA H K Kumaraswamy is the party’s candidate from Sakleshpur segment.
oting that BJP has only one seat in Hassan district, Shah said Preetham Gowda has done a good job against the “dynasts”, and on the basis of his work BJP is going to win more seats in the district.
He told the JD(S) and its leadership that he along with the entire working machinery of the BJP stands firmly with Preetham Gowda, and it is not easy to make his party worker to retreat from the fray.
“BJP will win this time in Hassan district and lotuses will bloom. I request the people and voters of Sakaleshpur to ensure ‘Cement’ Manjunath (BJP candidate) wins and strengthen Modi’s hands,” he added.
Stating that JD(S) and Congress had given four per cent reservation for Muslims in Karnataka, the Union Home Minister said the BJP government has removed it and increased reservations for Lingayats, Vokkaligas and SC/STs.
The JD(S) and Congress say that they will come to power and bring in Muslim reservation once again. “I want to ask whose (reservation) will you reduce? Will you reduce Vokkaligas or Lingayats or SC/STs? You are against whom? tell it to the people of Karnataka.”
Shah, earlier held a massive road show in Sakleshpur segment’s Alur, waving at a large crowd.
The Union Minister, standing in a specially designed vehicle accompanied by Preetham Gowda and Manjunath, was greeted by an enthusiastic crowd gathered on the roadside and on nearby buildings, many of whom were seen chanting slogans praising BJP and PM Modi and shouting loud cheers.
A large number of party workers walked along with Shah’s vehicle holding BJP flags and raising slogans, amid drum beats. Shah was seen throwing flower petals at the crowd.