Bengaluru: To the embarrassment of the coalition government in the state, transport minister D C Thammanna not only spoke out against fielding candidates from a “filmy background” in Mandya, but also women in general on Thursday.
His barbs were aimed at Ms Sumalatha Ambarish, wife of the late actor/politician, M H Ambareesh, who has angered the JD(S) with her ambition to contest from Mandya in the coming Lok Sabha poll, when it is hoping to launch Chief Minister’s son Nikhil from it in politics. Claiming that the people of Mandya had one bad experience already after electing a woman (read actress Ramya aka Divya Spandana), who “vanished from the constituency,” he said caustically, “This is the problem with electing people from a filmy background. Please don’t fall prey to the sweet talk of actors/actresses and vote for them. Mr Nikhil, son of Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy is a real farmer's son and will work for the overall development of our district.” He, however, seems to have forgotten the fact that Mr Nikhil too is an actor.
In a more direct attack on Ms Sumalatha, the minister claimed she was very inhospitable to visitors to her home in Bengaluru when her husband was alive. “When this is her attitude , why should Mandya have an MP of this nature?” he demanded.
As his statement went viral on social media and news channels, Ms Sumalatha lost no time in hitting back, saying, “Everyone took advantage of my husband when he was alive. I am contesting from Mandya not for the sake of a post or position but to tell the country how good my husband was. I am seeking the blessings of the people of Mandya to fulfill his dreams for it. I am a Mandyada Magalu and I have full faith that the people will support me in the coming election.”
On his remark against people from a filmy background contesting from Mandya, she shot back, “Mr Thammanna may have made his remark keeping Nikhil Kumaraswamy in mind!”...