‘He has never worked for welfare of BCs, Dalits’

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Thursday alleged that Janata Dal (Secular) national president H.D. Deve Gowda has never worked for the welfare of backward classes and Dalits.

Addressing an election rally in Holenarsipur, Mr. Gowda’s home town, Mr. Siddaramaiah said that Mr. Gowda opposed the L.G. Havanur commission report and Justice Venkataswamy commission report, which recommended reservation for backward classes.

“The JD(S) has not been able to win town panchayat seats from Ambedkar Colony in Holenarsipur where Scheduled Castes live in huge numbers. When Mr. Gowda can’t gain the confidence of Dalits in Holenarsipur, how can he gain the confidence of others elsewhere,” he asked.

Association with Gowda

Recalling his association with Mr. Gowda, Mr. Siddaramaiah alleged that he (Mr. Gowda) could not tolerate the growth of any other leader. “He does not want others to come up. The party will soon comprise only himself, his children and grandchildren. The JD(S) will not win even one seat in the Lok Sabha elections,” he said.

On Kumaraswamy

Referring to JD(S) leaders weeping in public, he said: “When I made this comment earlier, his son H.D. Kumaraswamy said he wept looking at the state of poor people. If he is so concerned about the poor, why doesn’t he weep at any time other than during elections,” he asked.

Two JD(S) candidates have withdrawn from the fray and extended support to the Congress.

“When their party candidates themselves have no faith in their leaders, why should you support them,” Mr. Siddaramaiah asked the gathering. The people of Hassan had supported Deve Gowda for more than 50 years. But they got nothing in return, he claimed and added that the time had come for them to support the Congress.

Anna Bhagya scheme

Reacting to JD(S) leader and Mr. Gowda’s son H.D. Revanna’s recent comment that the Anna Bhagya scheme would be withdrawn after the elections, Mr. Siddaramaiah said the scheme was not launched to seek votes, but to ensure a hunger-free state. “We will give up power, but not this scheme,” he said.

Energy Minister D.K. Shivakumar, who is in charge of elections in Hassan, appealed to voters to support the Congress assuring them that he would be with the people of Hassan.

“I will consider this my constituency. You can contact me any time for any development work. I will be with you,” he told the gathering. He added that he would come back to Hassan after the elections as district in-charge Minister.

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