With Karnataka Elections in next few days, we present to our readers, a series tailored specifically for people who are interested in all the required information regarding this election. Mahesh Gajabar writes for you explaining why Karnataka is different and how their politics works since the early days. Readers are advised to draw their own conclusions from Author’s views. Here comes the fifth part of ‘Unfolding Karnataka’ Series, now putting facts and numbers together, region wise. You can follow the series here.
All three MP seats are won by BJP. This region has just 19 MLA seats but its very unique from rest of Karnataka. Here no Lingayat No Vakkaliga and No Kuruba factors at all since these three castes have very less presence here. All elections in this happen on religion basis.
This region is infamous for communal violence between Hindu and Muslim. There are many Hindu & Muslim boys got killed in last 5 years. There was a section 144 imposed in many parts of Udupi district for a couple of weeks. This region has a strong presence of Sangha Parivar. There are many beautiful churches which got attacked by Sangha Parivar men when BJP was ruling.SDPI pro-Muslim party has got raised significantly here and they have announced support for Congress.
According to pre-poll surveys both BJP & Congress are in neck to neck fight and bother may end in 1-2 seat difference (9 to 11). In Yallapura of Uttara Kannada district, there are about 50k Lingayat voters and Haliyal of Uttara Kannada has got 80k Maratha votes and 35k Lingayat votes. Rest all have difference caste equations. Brahmins have a dominance in some of the seats here. Konkani is also one most spoken language here after Tulu and Kannada. It is said that mangurians are everywhere right from the underworld (Ravi Poojari) to Bollywood, Sandalwood, Kollywood(Aishwarya Rai, Shilpa Shetty, Deepika Padukone, Sunil Shetty, Anushka Shetty). UAE’s biggest hospital also run by a man from this region Shetty.
In spite of beautiful coastal line and abundant resources, This region is lacking in development because of continuous religious clashes. These three districts always stand in top position for 10th and 12th results of Karnataka State. It has higher literacy rate and higher sex ratio (1000/1050) in spite of that communal forces are still active in this region.
Firebrand union minister Anant Hegade who made many statements on SC/ST and constitution change belongs to this region. RV Deshpande winning from Haliyal from 1989 and he is a 3 time Heavy Industries minister (Both in Janatadal & Congress. Currently also holds the same portfolio in current govt) is an interesting candidate to look for. Though Haliyal has Maratha(80k) and Lingayat(35k) voters Deshapande being a brahman (hardly 2k voters) won from Haliyal 5 times. He is relative of NCP leader Praful Patel. CM in waiting candidate. His Brahman background is an obstacle for him since Karnataka got only 2.7% Brahman population. His opponent is from BJP is also a Brahman(Hegade) who defeated Deshpande in 2008 and lost in 2013 by just 2500 votes. In 2008 Hegade contested on JDS and now has shifted to BJP for better chances.
In Samyukta Maharashtra slogan there is a Karwar also(Belagao, Nippani, Karwar, Bidar ani Bhalki Maharashtra zalach paahije). But interestingly Karwar has very little influence of Marathi. It has heavy Konkani and Kannada influence. While Haliyal has almost 50%+ Marathi influence it’s not there in Samyukta Maharashtra slogan. No language or fringe politics in Haliyal.
This region is also known for illegal mining since mining ore from Bellari used to export from Karwar seaport. Satish Sail Independent MLA from Karwar and Mankal Vaidya Congress MLA from Yallapur have allegations against them on involving illegal mining ore export scam. Like Ballari district, Siddu has also imported Satish sail and given him a Congress ticket. Mankala Vaidya has also got a Congress ticket.
Interesting stats to look for in this region are Forest minister Ramanath Rai(Bantwal, Mnagaluru district) who won 6 times in spite of Sangha Parivar influence. Fishery minister Pramod Madhvaraj versus Raghupati Bhat in Udupi land of Sri Krishna Mutts.
– To be Continued –
(Mahesh Gajabar contributed to this article in his personal capacity. The views expressed are his own and do not necessarily represent the views of the Netive.in.)