Ahinda, a group representing minorities, backward classes and Dalits, and the International Christian Union have extended their support to Congress or its candidates.

Addressing a press conference on Tuesday, Purushottam Poojary, president of Ahinda, Dakshina Kannada unit, said they had belief that with Congress leader Siddaramaih, who is an OBC (Other Backward Class), at the helm, a Congress government in the State would be beneficial to the depressed classes. “Among the major parties, Congress is the political party that has given the maximum number of tickets to minorities and dalits,” he said.

When asked why they would not support Ahinda member Lolaksha in Bantwal, Vasudev Boloor, honorary president, told The Hindu: “We have made a decision keeping the overall development in the state in mind. Lolaksha is standing from another party (Republican Party of India, and is considered as an independent), and we cannot make him an exception to a decision that considers the larger picture.”

Meanwhile, Michael Lobo, convener of Mangalore unit of International Christian Union Association, said the Association will undertake door-to-door campaigns to ensure the victory of J.R. Lobo in the city. “The church attack, pub attack and the homestay attack during the administration of the BJP-led government has created the feeling that minorities are being targeted. The Community has become politically strong to protect itself,” he said.

The association said they would reach out to parish priests and reach out to Christian households to poll for the Congress.

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