Karnataka polls: Candidates make beeline to temples

The candidates in the fray are making a beeline to temples hoping for a divine swing in their favour.

Bangalore: As the poll fever hots up in Karnataka for the May 5 Assembly Elections, the candidates in the fray are making a beeline to temples hoping for a divine swing in their favour.

Whether it is Gali Anjaneya Temple, the famous Bull temple or the Lord Narasimha Temple here, candidates and their supporters are seen waiting patiently to have a darshan, promising generous donations, if they emerge victorious.

According to the priests, the candidates consult their respective family astrologers before visiting a temple and are very particular on performing certain "poojas" on specific days as per their horoscopes.

"It is sometimes interesting to see an individual who has never paid obeisance to gods in his life time, bending backwards to please the almighty for his own selfish reason. But he does not know that he can take the people, not the gods for a ride", said a priest on condition of anonymity.

The rush in the temples is more during early morning and late evening with the candidates spending over an hour at the temples, the married ones along with their spouses, offering huge floral garlands and fruits to the gods.

Varadarajan (name changed), the head priest of a famous temple says, "most of them (candidates) utilise their visit to the temple to interact with the public, an indirect way of campaigning".

"One can see them at their politest best with the public and also donating generously to beggars who sit on temple steps, a behaviour which can be witnessed only before polls", he said.

"We, besides astrologers are very much in demand in such times. The astrologers to foretell the political future of the candidates and advise them as to what they should do to fulfil their political aspirations and we to help them with implementation of the astrologers` instructions. We make hay while the sun shines", he says unflinchingly with a smile.