Varuna and Chamundeshwari: A tale of ‘two eyes’ of Siddaramaiah

All aspects of development in Varuna, which came about in last 5 years, have placed it far ahead of Chamundeshwari.

Published: 01st May 2018 05:12 AM  |   Last Updated: 01st May 2018 11:19 AM   |  A+A-

A farmer busy sprinkling fertiliser to paddy crop on the outskirts of Siddaramanahundi village | Udayashankar S

Express News Service

CHAMARAJANAGAR: An oft-repeated statement of Chief Minister Siddaramaiah in the last five years has been: “Varuna and Chamundeshwari Assembly constituencies are like my two eyes.” He represented the latter for five terms before switching over to the former from where he was elected twice.

But all aspects of development in Varuna, a predominantly rural segment, that came about in the last five years have put it far ahead of Chamundeshwari.  Good roads, storm-water drains, modernised canals, lush green fields, hygienic drinking water units, constructions and renovations of temples and community halls make Varuna a happening constituency.  On the other hand, his other eye Chamundeshwari does not paint as rosy a picture.

Development has taken a beating in this constituency, which its people mainly attribute to the political rivalry between Siddaramaiah and sitting MLA G T Devegowda.  However, in the last one year, some developments like filling of tanks and sprucing up of roads have taken place in some parts of Chamundeshwari.

The reason for the CM’s sudden love for the constituency became clear when he picked the constituency to contest the 2018 election from after handing over the well-nurtured Varuna to his son.

Despite the unprecedented development in Varuna, there is grouse in some pockets that followers of Siddaramaiah neglected the welfare of Vokkaligas and Lingayats, and their colonies. “This is evident in Siddaramanahundi, Siddaramaiah’s native village.”

“While roads and storm-water drains in areas of Kurubas are of good quality, the same in areas of Vokkaligas are wearing out, quite obviously because of the poor quality work. Storm-water drains are blocked at several places raising a stink. Supposedly because of a land dispute, mounds of cow dung dumped near an anganwadi is risking the health of its children,” a local told The New Indian Express.

Good roads are the most visible development in all villages of Varuna constituency| Udayashankar S

The lion’s share of government facilities, work contracts, jobs at Mysore University and newly-constructed Jayadeva Cardiac Hospital are said to be cornered by close followers of the chief minister “on recommendation”. People, though, blame his followers and not Siddaramaiah for the disparity.

The feeling is the same among Lingayats of Alattur. Mahesh, a resident of the village, says they have benefited a lot because of well-constructed roads and the de-silting of tanks among other works. “But when it comes to individual welfare, us Lingayats have got a raw deal,” he said.But there are some villages like Hadinaru, Moodalli, Mallarajanahundi among others where people of all castes feel there was no discrimination when it came to development. “See, the chief minister cannot satisfy all who go to him for help. It is obvious that some who could not get help feel disappointed,” reasons Mahadevaswamy of Hadinaru.

Ningaiah, a septuagenarian from the same village, says his village has seen unprecedented development in the last five years, “which is there for everyone to see”.Real estate in Chamundeshwari is going through a boom, as the town is quickly moving towards urbanisation, with agricultural fields turning into commercial and residential layouts here.

Kabini infuses life into several tanks
Jayapura hobli, one of the earlier ones to face drinking water problems in a Mysuru taluk, which happened last summer, has now got Kabini water. A number of tanks, most of which were dry for the last many years in villages like Maddur, Doora, Marballi, Hosanakere, Halya, Pura, Kanchanahalli and others are now filled with water this year due to a lake-filling project by redirecting water from Kabini.  Work on another lake-filling project initiated at Madhurhundi has further raised people’s hopes.

Beerihundi takes the beating of political rivalry
Beerihundi, a village dominated by Kurubas, to which Siddaramaiah belongs, is “hit badly” due to political rivalry of the ruling party and the JD(S), as zilla panchayat member Beerihundi Basavanna and Congress leader and former ZP president Marigowda, both of who belong to the same village, “don’t see eye to eye”. It is bad roads and unhygienic conditions that greet people at Beerihundi, as a consequence of this discord.


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