Earlier Mr Shah visited the Siddaganga Math in Tumakuru and sought blessings of the 110-year-old seer Sri Shivakumara Swamiji. He was accompanied by Mr Yeddyurappa, Union Minister Anant Kumar, BJP political in-charge for Karnataka Muralidhar Rao and other leaders.Later, speaking to coconut growers in Tipatur town in Chitradurga district, he said the Congress fearing a debacle in the May Assembly election in Karnataka was out to divide the dominant Veerashiva-Lingayat community against the wishes of the people. The party’s move was akin to erstwhile British rulers in the country who had resorted to divide and rule policy. Before leaving the country the colonists divided the people and the country on religious lines and the Siddaramaiah government in Karnataka was committing a similar mistake.
The Congress party had not raked up the issue for the last five years and was doing it when election was nearing for narrow political gains. This was a ploy to stop Mr Yeddyurappa from becoming the Chief Minister again as he belonged to the community. But this cruel plan will not work. He asked the community not to get carried away with the plan of the Chief Minister which was against the interest of Veerashiva-Lingayat community. Mr Siddaramaiah is an anti-Hindu leader, he charged.
Meanwhile Mr Shah said Karnataka had become a top exporter of dry coconut after Narendra Modi had become the Prime Minister. Due to pro-farmer policies, the coconut was now being exported due to value addition and different products produced out of it. Earlier India had witnessed import of dry coconut from Malaysia, Indonesia and Sri Lanka and the Union Government had stopped it now.
The BJP leader asked the Coconut Growers to impress upon the Centre for help as they had been facing challenges like pest attack on crop and fluctuating price of coconut and also to locate a Coconut Research Unit in Tipatur. ‘’I appeal to you to ensure BJP victory and strengthen the hands of Chief Ministerial Candidate B S Yeddyurappa and leave the job of setting up the Institute to him,’’ he added.The BJP leader said it was time the people of the state ease out the corrupt Congress party from Karnataka and bless BJP.(EDS: Pick up suitably from MS 6).(UNI)