Mysuru: Close on the heels of the BJP's first ever win in the Vokkaliga heartland of Mandya in the recent byelections, Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa visited the seer of the community's Adichunchangiri Matha, Nirmalananda swamiji and offered prayers at the Kalabyraveswara temple on Thursday.
The Chief Minister later participated in the 23rd inter- school and college sports meet hosted by the Sri Adichunchangiri University at Adichunchangiri in Mandya district.
Interestingly, Nagamangala MLA Suresh Gowda of the Janata Dal (Secular) not only garlanded Mr Yediyurappa on the occasion, but also touched his feet and took his blessings. He then joined the Chief Minister on his visit to the Adichunchangiri Matha.
In more worry for the JD(S), which suffered a humiliating defeat in K R Pete in the district in the December bypoll, he was seen holding hands with newly elected BJP MLA of the assembly constituency, Narayangowda at the sports meet, leading to speculation that he was cosying up to the saffron party.
Speaking at the sports event, Mr Yediyurappa lamented that students today were more interested in indoor activities and advised parents to encourage them to pursue outdoor sports, which could help them become more disciplined and develop a healthy competitive spirit.
Listing the government's contributions to sports in the state, he said the Karnataka Sports Authority recently appointed 36 coaches, 28 junior coaches, 12 fitness trainers, one physiotherapist and one sports nutritionist.
“A grant- in- aid of Rs 4.13 crore has been given to 225 SC sportspersons and 55 from ST. Also , the General Thimayya National Adventure Academy conducted basic training in mountaineering in Kashmir for 90 SC/ST sportspersons recently," he added....