Mangaluru: The Congress seems to have gone into election mode in Mangaluru with the Lok Sabha polls fast approaching, as it has organised a series of padayatras and protests to highlight the failures of the Union government over the past month here.
Besides a three- day padayatra against the delay in widening of the NH 75 stretch from Nellyadi to BC Road, the party has held several protests against the merger of Vijaya Bank with the Bank of Baroda and Dena Bank.
The Congress is clearly preparing to take on the Bharatiya Janata Party, which has been winning from the Mangaluru constituency since 1991.
The Congress has failed to win even once over the past 27 years despite fielding stalwarts like B Janardhan Poojary and M Veerappa Moily from the constituency.
But this time, the party feel it has an opportunity to win as it can use the anti- incumbency factor against both the Union government and two- time Mangaluru MP, Nalin Kumar Kateel, to its advantage.
“On the one hand, we have the list of unkept promises of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and demonitisation and GST, which have hit the businessmen and traders in the region hard and on the other, we have the failures of Nalin Kumar Kateel, who has been MP for 10 years,” says Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee general secretary P V Mohan.
Accusing the BJP MP of failing in all fields, he says no new industry was set up in the region for job creation, and nor were measures taken to improve agriculture or upgrade the national highway.
“We have got the best opportunity to win this time. But we can make use of it only if we field a new candidate with a good professional background or from an OBC community,” he adds....