Bengaluru, March 23: After having heated debates over cow, communalism, Kannada pride, Karnataka flag and religious status to Lingayats, among others, the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) have now decided to fight over farmers in poll-bound Karnataka. The elections to the 224-member Karnataka Assembly are likely to take place between the last week of April and the first week of May. Before the elections, both the parties are leaving no stone unturned to attack each other and polarise the people of Karnataka as much as possible.
The distress in agriculture is the latest subject over which both the Congress and the BJP are fighting on Twitter. Allegations and counter-allegations are flying thick and fast to prove which party is the biggest benefactor of the farmers. If the BJP has alleged that more than 3,700 farmers have committed suicide in Karnataka during the incumbent Congress government, the Congress, on its part, has asked the Karnataka unit of BJP to ask the Narendra Modi government at the Centre to write off farm loans across the country.
Jumping into the farmers' debate, incumbent chief minister of Karnataka Siddaramaiah on Thursday dubbed the state BJP unit as "spineless" for not demanding the Centre to write off farm loans, while the saffron party hit back at the CM asking him to announce the debt relief just like the Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra governments.
"The Karnataka BJP is so spineless that instead of asking the center to waive farmers' loans it is giving accountancy lessons on Twitter. People will not be fooled. Center can write off lakhs of crores of a few industrialists but can't give debt relief to crores of farmers," Siddaramaiah tweeted.
The Karnataka BJP is so spineless that instead of asking the center to waive farmers’ loans it is giving accountancy lessons on Twitter.— Siddaramaiah (@siddaramaiah) March 22, 2018
People will not be fooled. Center can write off lakhs of crores of a few industrialists but can’t give debt relief to crores of farmers. https://t.co/D9LH60Asaz
Moments later, the Karnataka BJP took a swipe at Siddaramaiah saying, "Talking about spine, UP and Maharashtra CM's exhibited their spine by waiving farm loans without Centre's help. If you have one, why don't follow suit and waive farm loans yourself?"
The Karnataka BJP also took a swipe at Congress president Rahul Gandhi and tweeted, "Yes, we were wrong in teaching accountancy. We realise it is beyond you and your boss's comprehension levels!"
Yes, we were wrong in teaching accountacy. We realise it is beyond you and your boss's comprehension levels!— BJP Karnataka (@BJP4Karnataka) March 22, 2018
Talking about spine, UP & MH CM's exhibited their spine by waiving farm loans without centre's help. If you have one, why don't follow suit & waive farm loans yourself? https://t.co/58U47P1qcW
In reply to the BJP's challenge over farm loan waiver, the Congress wrote on Twitter, "And yet 30,000 farmers in Maharashtra had to walk for a week to reach Mumbai and meet the CM asking for a Farm Loan waiver!"
And yet 30,000 farmers in Maharashtra had to walk for a week to reach Mumbai and meet the CM asking for a Farm Loan waiver!— Karnataka Congress (@INCKarnataka) March 22, 2018
Spineless @BJP4Karnataka must ask PM Modi for a nationwide Farm Loan waiver. The UPA Govt did it in 2008. What's stopping Modi? #BariOluBJP https://t.co/yZIMH3r5cE
The argument between the parties did not end there. The BJP highlighted that thousands of farmers have committed suicide under the Siddaramaiah government in Karnataka.
After driving 3700+ farmers to suicide, shameless Congress in K'taka have audacity to indulge in petty political blame game.— BJP Karnataka (@BJP4Karnataka) March 22, 2018
Get ready to witness another choke slam moment as we expose Cong farmer apathy with facts in this thread. We dare them to counter this!#NoMoreHitAndRun https://t.co/E9sGMkda7S
The BJP alleged that the Karnataka irrigation minister MB Patil did only two things during his tenure, "collecting kickbacks from irrigation tenders and dividing the Veerashaiva-Lingayat community".
Cong' K'taka Irrigation Min spent his tenure doing two things:— BJP Karnataka (@BJP4Karnataka) March 22, 2018
1. Collecting kickbacks from irrigation tenders
2. Dividing the Veerashaiva- Lingayat community
Only if we had a Irrigation Min who was serious about his job, 3700+ wouldn't have ended their lives!
The BJP also claimed that the current BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government at the Centre did more for farmers compared to the previous Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government.
Cong big talk on farmers dont reflect in numbers:— BJP Karnataka (@BJP4Karnataka) March 22, 2018
1. UPA allotted 6182 cr for much needed Fasal Bima Yojana, PM Modi hiked it by 436% to 33,162 cr
2. Even in implementation BJP outperforms Cong. For ex, for last Rabi season, while MH enrolled >13 lakh farmers, KA had only 21298
|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|