BJP MP Sudhakar’s ‘heady’ thanksgiving event in Karnataka draws criticism

It is said that the organisers had expected a crowd of 10,000-15,000 but over 60,000 turned up.
Attendees collect liquor at the venue, where a thanksgiving event was held for BJP-JDS workers after Dr K Sudhakar’s win, in Nelamangala on Sunday
Attendees collect liquor at the venue, where a thanksgiving event was held for BJP-JDS workers after Dr K Sudhakar’s win, in Nelamangala on Sunday

BENGALURU: The thanksgiving event for BJP-JDS workers by newly elected Chikkaballapur BJP Lok Sabha member Dr K Sudhakar, held at Nelamangala on Sunday, turned chaotic as those attending it fell over each other to get liquor that was being served free at the venue. The police had a tough time controlling the crowd and had to merely watch the melee.

At the event, allegedly sponsored by Nelamangala BJP president Jagadish Chowdhary, non-vegetarian food, beer and packets of hard liquor were distributed. Some of the participants had passed out at the venue, eyewitnesses said.

It is said that the organisers had expected a crowd of 10,000-15,000 but over 60,000 turned up. Even if it was the expected numbers, it would have still been difficult to control the crowd, said a police officer. “At least in future, the excise department should not give licence to such public events,” he suggested.

It also exposed a lack of coordination as Bengaluru Rural SP CK Baba had asked the excise department not to give a licence to serve liquor, which was ignored, sources said.

But Excise Deputy Commission Nagesh Kumar told TNIE, “The organisers had applied before the Nelamangla DySP for permission and paid a fee of Rs 11,500, following which we gave a day’s licence.”

Assembly Opposition Leader R Ashoka, former MLA Nagaraju and former MLC E Krishnappa from JDS also took part in the event.

Sudhakar said, “I am not aware of the distribution of liquor and I do not encourage such things. The participants might have bought liquor somewhere and had it at the venue.”

Health and Family Welfare Minister Dinesh Gundurao posted on X, “Saying one thing, doing another, how to believe them(BJP)... BJP leaders are busy distributing liquor while the state is dengue-stricken. Where are the BJP leaders who questioned venturing into swimming when I visited Mangaluru? Is this(distribution of liquor) your culture?”

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