Ballari: Carving a Hosapete-centric ‘Vijayanagar district’ out of ore-rich Ballari is likely to become a key issue in the campaign for the Hosapete assembly bypoll with both the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party and Congress vying to back the idea.
The constituency is heading for a bypoll due to the resignation of former Congress legislator B.S. Anand Singh, who was the first of the 17 MLAs to resign in July, leading to the collapse of the Congress-Janata Dal (Secular) coalition government.
Now, the disqualified MLA is preparing to contest the Hosapete by-poll should he be fielded by the Bharatiya Janata Party, and is strongly coming out in support of a separate ‘Vijayanagar district’ to strike a chord with the voters.
Sources say Mr Singh hopes to field his son, Sidharth, from the constituency should he not be able to contest himself owing to the case of the 17 disqualified legislators pending before the Supreme Court.
He is reportedly trying to persuade Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa to back the bifurcation of Ballari district before the Hosapete bypoll is notified and has met several pontiffs from the district to support him on the demand.
A delegation led by Ujjini pontiff, Siddalinga Shivacharya Swamiji, is now expected to meet Mr Yediyurappa to urge him to declare a Hosapete- centric Vijayanagar district soon. "Anand Singh wants a separate district for his political gain as if it is formed, he can then stake claim to become district minister,” said a Bharatiya Janata Party leader.
Meanwhile, Congress leaders too assembled in large number in Hosapete on Monday to demand division of Ballari district and claimed they were the first to raise the issue 12 years ago....