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Karnataka polls: Amit Shah accuses Siddaramaiah government of 'dividing' Hindus

Amit Shah said on Tuesday that the move to accord religious minority tag to Lingayats and Veerashaiva Linagayats by  Siddaramaiah government in Karnataka was an attempt to 'divide' the Hindus.

Karnataka polls: Amit Shah accuses Siddaramaiah government of 'dividing' Hindus
Pic courtesy: Twitter/@AmitShah

Davanagere: BJP president Amit Shah on Tuesday accused the Siddaramaiah government in Karnataka of trying to divide Hindus. He also said that the current Congress government was the "most corrupt" one in the country.

"Just ahead of the (Assembly) elections in Karnataka, they have tried to divide Lingayats and Veerashaivas, also Lingayats and other communities, by announcing minority status for them," Shah told reporters.

Questioning the timing of the move, he asked the Siddaramaiah government, "What were you doing for five years?" In 2013, when your own (UPA) government was in power at the Centre, they had rejected it. Why was Siddaramaiah silent then? This is an attempt to divide the Hindus."

Shah said it was not a programme towards the welfare of the Veerashaiva and Lingayat community but a "conspiracy" to stop Yeddyurappa, considered a Lingayat strongman, from becoming the chief minister.

"Lingayat community understands it and I am sure the people of Karnataka will answer it through ballots," he said. 

The Karnataka Cabinet had recently decided to recommend to the Centre over according religious minority tag to Lingayats and Veerashaiva Lingayats. Alleging that Siddaramaiah even tried to bring 'mutts' and temples under the government control, the BJP chief said it was given up following opposition to the move.

"I have made five to six visits to Karnataka and after meeting people, I have been able to understand the feeling of Karnataka," said Shah. "The feeling of people of Karnataka is that he (Siddaramaiah) is not AHINDA leader, an AHINDU (anti-Hindu) leader," Shah further said. 

AHINDA is a Kannada acronym for minorities, backward classes and Dalits. He said if the Congress did not stop Siddaramaiah, the party might have to face "harsh consequences" in elections. "On one hand, Congress president speaks about uniting Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs and Christians, while on the other hand in Karnataka, its own CM is speaking about dividing Hindus.

"I have not seen such a sharp difference within a political party," he added.

Earlier, Shah kickstarted the 'Mushti Dhaanya Abhiyaan' (fistful foodgrain campaign) at Doddabati village near where he collected food grains from farmers. The campaign is aimed at showing solidarity with the distressed farmers of Karnataka who have committed suicide.

(With PTI inputs)