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Yogi Adityanath to give BJP’s Hindutva campaign a push in Karnataka assembly polls

The BJP is banking on chief minister Yogi Adityanath to give the party’s Hindutva pitch a push in the election campaign.

india Updated: Feb 27, 2018 09:00 IST
Kumar Uttam
Kumar Uttam
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Yogi Adityanath,Karnataka,Karnataka assembly polls
Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath during inauguration of Braj Holi Rasotsav in Mathura on February 23. (PTI File Photo)

Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath will address a rally in Surathkal in Karnataka on March 16 as part of the BJP’s campaign against killing of the workers related to the RSS and its affiliates in the poll-bound state, a BJP leader said on Monday.

Karnataka will go to polls in April-May.

The rally in Surathkal, a suburb of Mangalore, will mark the end of a fortnight-long Surakasha Yatra – or safety march — from two different locations in the Malnad region and coastal belt of Karnataka to protest against the killings by radical outfits, an issue which has became a major political controversy. The BJP claims that more than 24 workers of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and its affiliates have been killed by radical outfits during the tenure of chief minister Siddaramaiah.

Union HRD minister Prakash Javadekar said the chief minister has only provided “goon governance” and only the BJP can deliver “good governance”. Javadekar is BJP’s election in-charge for Karnataka.

The BJP is banking on Adityanath to give the party’s Hindutva pitch a push in the election campaign.

“Yogi comes from a certain background and has a following even outside Uttar Pradesh,” a BJP office bearer in Delhi said.

Adityanath, who is from the Nath sect to which the Mangalore-based Kadali Sri Yogeshwar (Jogi) Mutt belongs, had also campaigned during the Parivartan Yatra between November and January.

Situated along the Arabian Sea coastline, Uttara Kannada, Udupi and Dakshina Kannada districts of Karnataka are hotbed of religious conflicts and centre of several spiritual centres. These places also have significant Muslim population and strong presence of RSS and other Hindu outfits.

Union minister Ananth Kumar Hegde, who often courts controversy with his hardline statements, will flag off the yatra from Ankola in Uttara Kannada and cover the coastal Karnataka before reaching Mangalore.

Union minister DV Sadananda Gowda will launch the yatra from Kushalnagar in Kodagu district and will travel to areas such as Udupi and Bhatkal before reaching Mangalore on March 16.

“Both groups will converge at Surathkal on March 16 with a huge public rally in Yogi’s presence,” the BJP office bearer in Delhi said.

BJP president Amit Shah had visited Udupi and Dakshina Kannada between February 20 and 22, during which he also met the family members of two workers killed in the past three months.

First Published: Feb 27, 2018 07:02 IST