The Congress was strong enough to win elections in Karnataka by the dint of the welfare measures taken by the government for the betterment of STs, SCs, BCs and other weaker sections and minorities, when the Chief Minister, Siddaramaiah, decided to concede to the demand by the Lingayat community to recognize them as a separate religious minority. He sent the recommendation to the government of India and now the ball is in the centre’s court. The community supported the BJP in 2007 and it came to power and a strong man of the community B S Yeddyurappa became the Chief Minister. However, his corrupt deeds caused the downfall of the regime. The Congress again recaptured its own stronghold and Siddaramaiah won the hearts of the people.
Prominent Lingayat seer Mathe Mahadevi on April 7 declared the support of the community to the Congress. The Forum for Lingayat Seers asked the community members to support the Congress in coming assembly elections. The Union Minister Ananth Kumar accused Siddaramamiah of breaking Hindu society. However, it was a long pending demand that was considered and accepted by the Karnataka government. There was no political consideration when the demand was given green signal, the Chief Minister said.
The Congress president Rahul Gandhi while speaking to some journalists in Bengaluru on April 8 reiterated the failures of the Modi government and said only fifteen businessmen were enjoying “ache din’’ under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He said there was discrimination against the people of the south and north-east, minorities, Dalits and small businessmen. Farmers are taking rallies in Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and other states ruled by the BJP. He expressed his confidence to retain the state of Karnataka. When asked about the 2019 elections, he said the BJP was bound to lose the Lok Sabha polls.