Hubballi: With his "I am not a political sanyasi" bombshell on Saturday, is former chief minister Siddaramaiah hinting at changes in state politics, post Lok Sabha elections with the BJP's threats to pull down the government in the wake of the coalition failing at the parliamentary box office?
The Kuruba strongman, a star campaigner for the Congress, has criss-crossed the state extensively, both with party president Rahul Gandhi and leaders of JD (S), H D Deve Gowda and H D Kumaraswamy, to garner the support of voters for all candidates of Congress and JD (S) which needs the backing of the Vokkaligas and the Congress' traditional supporters to win. In the process, the former CM has also used the opportunity to consolidate the vote bank of the backward classes and took pains to reach out to other leaders of AHINDA movement, which together with the Congress' traditional vote bank can square off against the BJP's formidable Lingayat backing.
"Mr Siddaramaiah's stature among members of backward class communities has been growing in north Karnataka. He has emerged as dominant leader of AHINDA movement after he used his influence to secure Lok
Sabha ticket to around 15 candidates belonging AHINDA communities. He also lost no time while pacifying disgruntled leaders by holding meetings with them", says Shashikant Udagatti, general secretary, Bagalkot Zilla Kuruba Sangh.
But does it mean he wants to be CM of a Congress-led state government? On Saturday, Mr Siddaramaiah's ambitions for another term at the helm surfaced while challenging senior BJP leader and fellow Kuruba, K. S. Eshwarappa. "I am not a political sanyasi. The Congress will form the government after next Assembly elections, and I will become Chief Minister once again. I am active in politics and not taken sanyas. Otherwise, I would not have come for campaigning under this hot sun. But, I did not say I will become Chief Minister tomorrow", he told the media in Davanagere.
The former Chief Minister has toured north Karnataka extensively to secure the support of his clansmen in Mumbai Karnataka and districts such as Bagalkot and Vijayapura in particular on Saturday.
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