(Eds: rpting after recasting 3rd para) Mysuru, Mar 30 (PTI) BJP president Amit Shah today said he expected Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and the JD(S) to get the “biggest shock of their lives” from the old Mysuru region in the May 12 Assembly polls, though his party was “a bit weak” there.
“It is said that the BJP is a bit weak here (Old Mysuru region), but after seeing the work of the party workers, I expect Siddaramaiahji and the JD(S) to get the biggest shock of their lives from this (Old) Mysuru region,” he said while addressing the party’s “Nava Shakti Samavesha” rally here.
Shah today began his tour of the old Mysuru region, covering the districts of Mysuru, Chamarajanagara, Mandya and Ramanagara, where BJP had not won even a single seat in the previous election.
Of the 26 Assembly seats in the four districts, considered a Vokkaliga heartland, the BJP had not won even a single one in the 2013 Karnataka Assembly polls.
Moreover, the region is the home turf of Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, who hails from Mysuru.
The contest in old Mysuru is mainly between the Congress and the Janta Dal (Secular), led by former prime minister H D Deve Gowda.
Shah said it was the BJP, and not the JD(S), which had the ability to throw out the Siddaramaiah-led Congress government as Deve Gowda’s party would only secure “a very few seats here and there”.
“The Congress cannot take Karnataka on the path of development any further because its image has been soiled with corruption and the JD(S) does not have the ability to overthrow the Congress, because it can only win a few seats here and there,” he said.
Shah asked the people of Mysuru to make a choice between a “commission government” and a government which would take Karnataka on the path of development.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had, at a recent rally, described the Siddaramaiah government as “a 10 per cent commission government”.
Shah said his party did not only want to replace Siddaramaiah with Yeddyurappa as the chief minister, but also bring in change to take Karnataka on the path of development for the youth, women, Dalits and adivasis.
Referring to his gaffe at Davangere earlier this week, Shah said though he had committed a mistake in his speech while referring to Siddaramaiah’s corruption, the people of the state would not do the same because they knew Siddaramaiah’s rule well.
“Siddaramaiah and Rahul Gandhi were very happy over my gaffe while speaking about Siddaramaiah’s corruption. I had made a mistake, but the people of Karnataka will not make it, because they have understood Siddaramaiah’s government very well,” he said.
In a slip of the tongue at a press conference at Davangere while attacking the Siddaramaiah dispensation as the “most corrupt” one, Shah had said the Yeddyurappa government would get the number one award in corruption.
He had, however, corrected himself after being prompted by BJP MP Prahlad Joshi, who was seated next to him.
Shah also accused Siddaramaiah of playing with Karnataka’s pride by not celebrating the “jayanti” of noted Kannada poet Kuvempu or renowned engineer Sir M Vishveswaraiah.
“Siddaramaiah only remembers to celebrate the jayanti of Tipu Sultan (the 18th-century ruler of Mysore) to get votes,” he said.
This is published unedited from the PTI feed.