(G.N.S) Dt. 22
Denying his signature in the 2013 All India Veerashaiva Mahasabha (AIVM) memorandum seeking separate religious status to the Lingayats, BJP state president and chief ministerial candidate B S Yeddyurappa on Wednesday said it was chief minister Siddaramaiah who is playing with the emotions of the people and dividing the society for electoral gains.
“I have never signed any document seeking a separate religious status for the Veershaiva-Lingayats previously. Chief minister Siddaramaiah is the one playing with people’s emotions and using it for political gains ahead of the 2018 elections,” he said.
Yeddyurappa said the discord within the community is being brought about with a vitiating effect by Siddaramaiah.
“He is poisoning the entire atmosphere and trying to divide the society. Tomorrow, if more communities and castes come forward seeking a separate religious status will Siddaramaiah allow that too? What is the CM’s agenda?” he questioned.
Yeddyurappa termed Siddaramaiah government as being one of the worst state governments in the history of Karnataka.
Yeddyurappa, who till date had remained monosyllabic over the Lingayat issue, vented his anger against Siddaramaiah by citing that the entire community was opposed to the divisive agenda of the Congress.
“Even the Congress MLA and the president for the AIVM, Shamanur Shivashankarappa has come out in opposition of the government decision. He has clarified that without understanding the nuances in the inclusion of the Veerashaiva-Lingayats (believers in Basavanna philosophy) Shivashankarappa had given his assent to the government decision. He later retracted the statement and has called for a meeting on March 23 to discuss the same,’ said Yeddyurappa.
He said the BJP will take a further call on the Lingayat controversy after the AIVM meeting on March 23.
The BJP state president said Siddaramaiah, if at all serious of his intent to provide a separate religious status to Lingayats should have said he will discuss the matter with the AIVM to consider people’s opinions or pursued the same in his last four years.
(G.N.S) Dt. 22