Winnable Lingayats favourites with BJP, Congress for Belagavi

In Kalaburgi-Yadgir, BJP’s BG Patil, a Lingayat, is the sitting MLC, who is ready to defend his seat again while the Congress is keen on fielding Hanumant Bhusnur.

Published: 19th November 2021 05:50 AM  |   Last Updated: 19th November 2021 05:50 AM   |  A+A-

BJP Flag, Congress Flag

Representational image of BJP and Congress flags. (File photo | PTI)

Express News Service

BELAGAVI: Despite the support the Congress and BJP are getting from different dominant communities of North Karnataka, both the parties continue to promote only the influential Lingayat leaders in four important local bodies constituencies in the region. Most of the sitting MLCs from the local bodies constituencies of Belagavi-Chikkodi, Hubballi-Dharwad-Gadag-Haveri, Vijayapura-Bagalkot and Kalaburgi and Yadgir are Lingayats. And most of those contesting against the sitting MLCs also are Lingayats. 

Several Congress and BJP aspirants from other communities have been ignored in all the four major constituencies by both the parties and Lingayat leaders are on top in their list of priorities when it comes to election to the local bodies constituencies in all four constituencies. Many politicians say though the Lingayats are a major community in North Karnataka, the BJP and Congress are strongly supported by many others as well.

In the dual-seat of Vijayapura-Bagalkot, the Congress rallies behind the family of former minister MB Patil. His brother Sunilgowda Patil and SR Patil from Bagalkot (both Lingayats) are the sitting MLCs, and the party is certain to field Sunilgowda this time too. The BJP is keen on fielding either G S Nyamgouda, Prakash Tapshetti or PH Pujar, who all are Lingayats.

The Congress ignored many top leaders, including five-time legislator Veerkumar Patil (Jain), to field 36-year-old Channaraj Hattiholi, brother of MLA Laxmi Hebbalkar (Lingayat) from dual-seat Belagavi constituency, where BJP’s Mahantesh Kavatagimath, another Lingayat, is the sitting MLC and is likely to be fielded again.  Another sitting MLC from Belagavi is Vivekrao Patil (non-Lingayat), who is an Independent candidate.

Pradeep Shettar, brother of senior BJP leader Jagadish Shettar, is the sitting MLC from Hubballi--Dharwad-Haveri-Gadag local bodies constituency and is set to contest again. A Lingayat, Sharanappa Kotagi, is a favourite to get Congress ticket. In Kalaburgi-Yadgir, BJP’s BG Patil, a Lingayat, is the sitting MLC, who is ready to defend his seat again while the Congress is keen on fielding Hanumant Bhusnur.

Raising serious objections to the way political parties are rallying behind one community, a top Congress leader said, “Thirty-three per cent of members in all local bodies, including GPs, TPs and ZPs, who are the voters in local bodies elections are SCs/STs. Unfortunately, the candidates from these communities did not get the party tickets at the expected level to contest in the forthcoming elections from the local bodies constituencies. Similarly, the share of votes of many other communities is considerable in all the constituencies, but their candidates continue to be ignored.”

No differences in JDS: Bhavani
Hassan: Dr Suraj Revanna, grandson of JDS supremo HD Devegowd, was officially declared as the party’s candidate to fight the December 10 election from Hassan Local Authorities constituency of the Council. Announcing his candidature, JDS state president HK Kumaraswamy said that Dr Suraj’s name was unanimously finalised in the meeting of MLAs and senior leaders of the party.  It can be recalled that Dr Suraj’s mother— Bhavani Revanna— was considered party’s candidate till recently.  Speaking to TNIE, Bhavani said that most of the JDS workers wanted her to fight the polls. “I express my gratitude to them. There are no differences within the party,” she added. 


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