CONGRESS PRESIDENT Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday accused H D Deve Gowda’s JD(S) of tacitly allying with the BJP to defeat the Congress in the forthcoming Karnataka elections. Addressing a pre-election rally at Hassan, the family burrough of the former prime minister, Rahul called JD(S) BJP’s “B team”.
Congress president claimed that JD(S) will support BJP through the back door in the state polls. “In Karnataka, only one party is going to win and that is Congress. Whether an A team, B team, C team or D team joins hands with the RSS, it makes no difference,” he said.
Earlier, addressing a rally in Chikamagalur region of Karnataka, which tends to lean towards BJP these days but elected Indira Gandhi in the 1970s, Rahul called on the people to support him and Congress like they supported Indira Gandhi in the past.
“Indira Gandhi did a lot for the poor and weak in India because of the strength you gave her. I will also use the strength that you give to transform the lives of the poor and weak,’’ he said.
He said Prime Minister Narendra Modi does not understand the meaning of dharma since he often does not speak the truth. “When the people of India look towards the Prime Minister they want to hear the truth and messages of love and brotherhood and not hate because they know that this country cannot go forward without truth,” he said.
On the third round of his visits to Karnataka ahead of the polls, he visited the communally sensitive coastal district of Dakshina Kannada and the neighbouring districts of Chikamagalur and Hassan.
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Like in his previous visits, Rahul visited key temples in these regions as well churches and dargahs as part of renewed effort to portray the image that Congress is not anti-Hindu as often accused by BJP and that it respects all faiths.
On Wednesday, Rahul visited the Sringeri mutt or the Sharada Peetham at Sringeri in Chikamagaluru and met the head of the mutt Sri Bharati Tirtha Swamiji. The Sringeri Mutt is one of four religious seats established by Adi Guru Shankaracharya in the eighth century. “India’s Prime Minister can be successful only when he has compassion in his heart,” Rahul said following his visit to the mutt.
On Tuesday, Rahul visited the Gokarnatheshwara Temple in Mangalore, which was consecrated by Narayana Guru and is a key temple of the backward caste Billava community who make up a sizable population of the Dakshina Kannada region. He also visited the popular Ullal dargah and the Rozario church.