BENGALURU: The controversial Tipu Jayanti celebration is set to be a solely Congress event even under the coalition government as CM H D Kumaraswamy won’t take part in the state’s official event at Vidhana Soudha on Saturday.
He will also not have any official engagements for three days owing to health reasons, according to the CM’s Office.
Kumaraswamy’s name has not been included in the invite for the event which will now be inaugurated by Deputy Chief Minister G Parameshwara. While Congress and JD(S) alike defended the CM’s decision to keep away from the celebrations over health concerns, Congress insiders acknowledge that his absence has left the party embarrassed. Kumaraswamy’s decision to skip celebrations has also given space for BJP to take jibes at the coalition.
“On the advice of doctors, the CM will take rest for three days till November 11. He will spend time with family and there will be no official engagements on these days,” read an official statement from the CMO on Friday.
The BJP, which has been protesting against the celebrations, termed the CMO press release ‘an afterthought’. “CM’s name is not on the invite and that makes the Congress’ intentions very clear. Kumaraswamy, who has seen how people of Mysuru decided to defeat Siddaramaiah over Tipu Jayanti, doesn’t want to earn the wrath of people by committing the same mistake,” said BJP spokesperson Malavika Avinash.
Congress leaders, including KPCC president Dinesh Gundu Rao and Minorities Affairs minister Zameer Ahmed, have defended the CM citing his ill health. However, a Congress office-bearer said, “There were disagreements over the venue. The Deputy Chief Minister wanted the event to be held at Ravindra Kalakshetra while Kumaraswamy didn’t see the need to shift the venue when all Jayanti celebrations are held at the Banquet Hall of Vidhana Soudha.” The source added that Kumaraswamy skipping the event will have no impact on the government’s celebrations in all districts. The JD(S) defended Kumaraswamy’s decision to sit out of the celebrations even as pro- and anti- debates rage on over Tipu Jayanti.
“It is not true that the CM doesn’t want to be part of celebrations. It is the doctor’s prerogative to suggest rest as and when required,” JD(S) MLC T A Saravana told the media when asked if Kumaraswamy was skipping the event because it was initiated by the Congress under Siddaramaiah’s government. Meanwhile, prohibitory orders are in place in Kodagu and parts of coastal Karnataka as part of security measures.
Bajrang Dal calls for Kuttappa Jayanti
Mangaluru: The Virajpet Bajarang Dal has called out to celebrate Kuttappa Jayanti on November 10 instead of Tipu Jayanti. Kuttappa, a Vishwa Hindu Parishad member, was killed during the Tipu Jayanti riot in Kodagu in 2015. “Instead of celebrating Tipu Jayanti, we will celebrate martyr Kuttappa Jayanti on November 10,” said Vivek Rai, convener of Virajpet Bajrang Dal.