K’taka bypolls: Questions raised over BJP’s loss at Hanagal


Team Udayavani, Nov 3, 2021, 12:23 PM IST

Bengaluru: Though BJP managed to register a thumping win in Sindagi, questions are raised over loss at Hanagal, which was held by the saffron party.

Party sources explain that the results have shown that the BJP can’t take former chief minister BS Yediyurappa lightly any more.

The Congress emerged a winner in the contest, wresting Hanagal from the BJP. Opposition leader Siddaramaiah stated that this is an indication of the declining popularity of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“In the next elections, Congress is going to attain power in Karnataka. The voter has indicated, they want change,” he said.

However, party sources said that, if Yediyurappa and his son B.S. Vijayendra were allowed to carry out full-fledged campaign in Hanagal, results would have been different.

The result has been a setback to the BJP, which wanted to move on from the shadow of Yediyurappa. The party is not in a position to blame him as he campaigned as per party’s plan. Everyone knew that, it wasn’t the usual style of Yediyurappa.

The party dropped Vijayendra from star campaigners list and added his name only after protest from his followers. Yediyurappa’s constituency Shikaripura borders with Haveri district and he holds a greater influence over the area. But, the party’s decision to cut short his campaign schedule boomeranged on them, sources said.

BJP State president Nalin Kumar Kateel described the defeat as a small setback. “It has shown us that we have to work hard,” he said.

Former prime minister H.D. Deve Gowda who campaigned in both the constituencies, reacting to JD(S) losing deposit in Sindagi and Hanagal, said that the national parties won elections by spending money. His son H.D. Kumaraswamy said that, the party lacked organization there. “I am not sad over the results. I fielded candidates as per wishes of the party workers. I do not attach importance to by-lections,” he said.

However, Congress though being divided into Siddaramaiah and Shivakumar camps, managed to wrest BJP forte in the Lingayat heartland. Though, more than 40,000 minority votes are there in Hanagal, BJP could get lead in only one round out of total 19. This has not gone down well with party leaders.

Yediyurappa has reiterated after results that he would take up the state-wide tour to strengthen the party and win assembly elections of 2023.

Initially, the party leaders who vehemently opposed Yediyurappa’s plans of State tour will now have to think twice before cutting him down to size, sources said.

(With inputs from IANS)

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