On Tuesday, the Swaraj India, Karnataka chapter, announced the names of six candidates who will contest the upcoming Karnataka Assembly elections under the party banner at an event in Bengaluru. The event was chaired by Swaraj India leader Yogendra Yadav. A host of farmer and Dalit organisations came together to give support to the Swaraj India in its debut election in the state.
Speaking at the event, Yadav said that it was an honour to be a part of a small but historic event in Bengaluru. "Five to ten years later, people will recall today's event. The idea of India is facing the biggest danger today after seventy years of our independence. The country is facing danger from the top, the ruling party. The opposition Congress has failed in its duty. There is an ideological and political vacuum in the country and Karnataka too. We need an alternative politics to save the country," said Yadav.
The Swaraj India is here to bring change in the country and Karnataka, he added. Yadav acknowledged the "tremendous support" given to the party by farmers, Dalits and anti-corruption movements.
The six Swaraj India candidates who will contest the upcoming Karnataka Assembly elections are Darshan Puttannaiah (a techie-turned-politician from Melukote constituency), Linge Gowda SH (a farmer-activist from Maddur constituency), Vaijanath Patil (an agricultural engineer from Yadir constituency), P Ramesh Chander (an engineer from Mahadevapura constituency in Bengaluru), KP Bhootaya (a farmer-activist from Challakere constituency) and Shailendra (a farmer-activist from Hanur constituency in Bengaluru).
At the beginning of the event, Yadav and his colleagues from the Swaraj India recalled the contributions of deceased farmer leader KS Puttannaiah. Puttannaiah, a two-time MLA from Melukote, passed away two months ago.
Senior Swaraj India party leader Devanuru Mahadeva too spoke at the event and asked all to fight to end politics of corruption and opportunism.
The Swaraj India party was founded last year by psephologist and academic Yadav and Supreme Court advocate Prashant Bhushan. Both Yadav and Bhushan were among a group of founding members of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), but later they were expelled from the party. Yadav, Bhushan and AAP convener and Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal were the three main faces of Anna Hazare led anti-corruption movement in 2011.
Recently, the Election Commission (EC) announced the polling and counting dates for Karnataka. While the polling for the 224-member Legislative Assembly will take place on May 12, the counting of votes will be held on May 15 in the southern state.
|Karnataka Assembly Election dates|
|Date of notification||April 17|
|Last date to file nominations||April 24|
|Last date to withdraw nominations||April 27|
|Date of polling||May 12|
|Date of counting||May 15|