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Karnataka polls: Mahadayi to make a comeback during Rahul Gandhi's second tour

By Anusha Ravi
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    In the second leg of his campaign ahead of Karnataka Assembly Election 2018 Congress chief Rahul Gandhi will tour the Mumbai-Karnataka region. The contentious Mahadayi row is expected to make a comeback as Congress aims to defeat the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) attempt to "hijack" the row.

    Congress President Rahul Gandhi

    The four-decade-old water sharing row between Karnataka, Goa and Maharashtra is turning out to be the biggest poll plank in the region that has a considerable Lingayat voting population.

    AICC President Rahul Gandhi's schedule in the region between February 24 and 26 makes no mention of temple or dargah visits. The carefully crafted schedule only mentions rallies, public meetings and corner meets ins various districts of Mumbai-Karnataka that Rahul Gandhi will tour.

    "Rahul Gandhi will visit temples and dargahs as part of his tour. There is nothing wrong in visiting temples. The issue of Mahadayi- that concerns the people of that region- will also be raised," said Dr G Parameshwara, President KPCC.

    As part of his 3-day tour, Rahul Gandhi is scheduled to visit districts of Belagavi, Chikkodi, Vijayapura, Bagalkot and Dharwad- regions fighting for drinking water from the Mahadayi (also called Mandovi) river.

    Over speculation of separate religious tag for Lingayats row eating dividing its vote share in the region, the BJP was compelled to play the Mahadayi card. While B S Yeddyurappa's claim of having solved the water sharing row during his Parivarthana Yatra merely on the basis of a letter by Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar backfired, the Congress cashed in on the opportunity to turn the tables in their favour.

    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

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