Bengaluru: Ahead of the Assembly polls in Karnataka, BJP chief Amit Shah will from Friday tour parts of the old Mysuru region, where the party had not won a single seat in the previous election. As part of his "Karunada Jagruti Yatre", Shah will tour Mysuru, Chamarajanagara, Mandya and Ramanagara districts on March 30 and 31.
Out of the total 26 seats in the four districts, considered as the Vokkaliga heartland, BJP did not win even a single seat during the 2013 Assembly elections. Moreover, the region is the home turf of Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, who hails from Mysuru.
Former Chief Minister and state JD(S) chief H D Kumaraswamy and senior minister D K Shivakumar enjoy considerable influence in the region. Significantly, Shah's itinerary includes meeting with the erstwhile royal family of Mysuru, triggering speculations about their supporting or joining the BJP.
However, scion of royal family Yaduveer Krishnadatta Chamaraja Wadiyar has ruled out political entry and said he got to know about Shah's meeting with the family through the media. "I have got this information only through the press. I can't say anything about it," he told reporters in Mysuru, when asked about the meeting with Shah.
"I have told several times that I'm not interested in politics. There is no chance at all about me joining any party. I'm not interested in politics. Through social work we will continue our relationship with the public," he said.
Continuing his visits to mutts, Shah will also visit influential Lingayat seminary in the region 'Suttur mutt', and also Ganapati Sacchidananda Ashrama. He will also visit the famous Nanjanagudu Srikanteshwara and the Melukote Cheluvanarayanaswamy temples.
Shah's schedule also includes meeting with Dalit leaders and lunch with them. He will also interact with organic farmers and women, take part in ST convention, visit Channapatna Craft Park and interact with silk growers and silk industry.
Recently, Congress President Rahul Gandhi too toured the region for two days. Interestingly, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah too is camping in Mysuru from today till April 2, and will take part in the campaign activities there.
Siddaramaiah has already announced his intentions to contest from Chamundeshwari constituency in Mysuru district. This is the fourth leg of Shah's tour in the state. He has already covered parts of coastal and Malnad, north, and central regions of the state.
The Election Commission had announced a single-phase election on May 12 for the 224-member Karnataka Legislative Assembly.