‘Demands for statehood will grow louderif govt. continues to neglect NK region’

Seers of various mutts demanding justice to North Karnataka through effective decentralisation, in Belagavi on Monday.

Seers of various mutts demanding justice to North Karnataka through effective decentralisation, in Belagavi on Monday.  

‘Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy has completely neglected us in the budget’

A group of religious leaders has warned the State government against neglecting North Karnataka saying that it could lead to strengthening the demand for statehood.

“Demands for statehood for North Karnataka will grow louder if the State government continues to neglect the development of this region. After all, if we are continuously neglected, what is wrong in asking for statehood?” Sri Siddarama Swamy of Nagnur Rudrakshi Mutt wondered, while speaking to presspersons in Belagavi on Monday.

He was speaking after deliberations organised by Uttar Karnataka Vikas Vedike in the Kannada Sahitya Bhavan.

“We have been repeatedly seeking delivery of justice for this region. We want effective decentralisation with more powers, specific schemes and additional funds. However, this is not happening. In the recent budget, Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy has completely neglected North Karnataka. Belagavi district has got nothing other than some money for irrigation schemes in Chikkodi,” the seer said. He pointed out that the budget had remained non-committal about important projects such as the Mahadayi irrigation project that would bring prosperity to the most backward taluks of the region.

He complained that the construction of the Suvarna Soudha in Belagavi was an incomplete project. The building is only a part of the government’s resolve to ensure decentralised decision-making. “Several Chief Ministers have been promising that they will shift important offices to the Suvarna Soudha. But no one has done it. That is because they don’t want to. They only give such statements to assuage the desperate people of this region,” the seer said.

He said that a symbolic protest would be held in front of the Suvarna Soudha on July 31, seeking effective decentralisation of power.

The seers of Karanji Mutt, Hunashyal Mutt and Hukkeri mutt, farmer leader Kalyanrao Muchalambi and BJP leader Ashok Pujari and other leaders were present.

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Printable version | Apr 7, 2020 1:20:10 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/demands-for-statehood-will-grow-louderif-govt-continues-to-neglect-nk-region/article24498541.ece

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