The real reason why H D Kumaraswamy is contesting from two seats
When H D Kumaraswamy decided to contest from two constituencies, there was talk that he was chasing a safe seat. The JD(S) chief and former chief minister of Karnataka is contesting from Ramanagara and the neighbouring Channapatna.
The fact that the Kumaraswamy has won from Ramanagara thrice only shows that he holds a sway over the constituency. This time around too he is in sight of win and observers say that he should have no problem.
The question then is why did he chose another seat. In Channapatna, he is against C P Yogeshwar of the BJP and transport minister, H M Revanna of the Congress. In the 2013, Yogeshwar had won this seat on an SP ticket. A few months back he joined the BJP and was given a ticket from this constituency.
The real reason according to JD(S) insiders why Kumaraswamy chose a second seat was because of his wife, Anitha Kumaraswamy. She was an aspirant to this seat, but was not given a ticket owing to a family feud.
While Kumaraswamy was keen that his wife contests, the problem arose when his nephew Prajwal, son of the H D Revanna opposed it. He wanted to contest from the same seat and this had led to a feud within the family. Kumaraswamy then decided to contest this seat by himself. He is confident of a win in Channapatna. Once the elections are over, he would retain the Ramanagara seat and vacate Channapatna for his wife, party insiders say.
While Kumaraswamy is certain of a victory in both constituencies, he is leaving nothing to chance. He has campaigned extensively in both constituencies. In Ramanagara, Kumaraswamy would be banking extensively on the Muslim and Vokkaliga votes.
The silk city is plagued by problems in the cocoon market. The business with an annual turnover of over Rs 600 crore is witnessing an unsteady phase. Those involved in the trade are mostly Vokkaligas and Muslims and hope that Kumaraswamy could solve their problems. They say that he understands their problems and hence he should be given a chance to rule the state.
When one witnesses Kumaraswamy during a campaign trail, it is clear that he is undoubtedly a popular leader in this constituency. He makes very emotional appeals and is all ears when he speaks with the voter. The voters too flock him in large numbers and many of them are aware that this is not just a one-off battle for their candidate, but one to remain relevant in Karnataka politics.
There is a considerable Mulsim population in Ramanagara and for years they have backed the JD(S). The Congress this year has fielded Iqbal Hussain with the hope of dividing the Muslim votes. This may not impact Kumaraswamy's voters. Most Muslims also do not believe that Kumaraswamy would tie up with the BJP in the post-election scenario. Many say that the issues that we face are relating to agriculture and trade and it is only Kumaraswamy who has tried to address that. Religion does not count here, the candidate who would address our problems does.
|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|