Kumaraswamy hits back at BJP for trolling over dialect

He accuses party of ‘insulting Kannada’ and says it uses trolling to divert attention

Former Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy has hit back at the BJP for social media handles trolling him over his use of a colloquial Kannada phrase — “mini-mini powder” (shimmery powder) — at a recent press conference on the Mangaluru airport bomb scare. Social media has been abuzz with memes punning on this phrase, some even targeting the JD(S) leader’s skin tone.

He has alleged that the BJP was behind this systematic trolling as they were “intolerant of a leader of the Kannada native community” and his use of a native dialect.

Mr. Kumaraswamy, during a press conference on the Mangaluru bomb scare, had said the the bomber had used “mini-mini powder” (powder used to create sparkle in crackers) to make the so-called bomb. The JD(S) leader was trying to drive home the point that it was the work of an amateur and not to be construed as a “terror attack”. He had also accused the BJP of using the incident to divide society. The press conference was prior to the police zeroing in on Aditya Rao as the accused.

Soon, the expression “mini-mini powder” was ridiculed on social media in many ways, with some editing the words in a such a way that it appeared like a reference to talcum powder.

In a series of tweets on Tuesday, Mr. Kumaraswamy attacked the BJP and accused them of insulting Kannada. “Mini-mini is an expression used for anything that shines in Kannada in rural areas. If the BJP is making fun of that word, it is insulting Kannada,” he said. Describing trolling as a tactic the saffron party uses to divert attention, he tweeted, “Today the country is witnessing crooked politics and this ridicule and trolling is only part of that. Cowards who cannot fight a leader directly try to bring down the leader through ridicule.”

Mr. Kumaraswamy went so far as to say the BJP had the “genes of Pakistan and Nazis” which made them intolerant to the leaders of “original Kannada inhabitant communities”.

This is not the first time the JD(S) leader has been the target of trolling. His speech, with the words “Nikhil ellideeyappa”, at the audio release function of a movie starring his son was used for trolling when K. Nikhil contested the 2019 Lok Sabha polls from Mandya.

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Printable version | Feb 26, 2020 12:58:15 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/kumaraswamy-hits-back-at-bjp-for-trolling-over-dialect/article30679087.ece

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