PM's visit, BJP's grassroots work lift party prospects in N. Karnataka

Hubbali, May 8 (IANS): Prime Minister Narendra Modi camping in Karnataka and addressing a gathering in Haveri has uplifted the spirits of the party cadres in north Karnataka. Coupled with this the organisational machinery of the BJP is functioning tirelessly and has almost completed four rounds of door-to-door campaigning.

In Hubbali, BJP candidate Mahesh Tenginkai, the party state general secretary and the blue-eyed boy of senior leader B.L. Santhosh, has been working hard to defeat the Congress candidate Jagadish Shettar whose exit from the BJP has become national news.

While Shettar has the support of the local people and their goodwill, being a six-term MLA and a former chief minister, the Hubbali seat is a stronghold of the BJP and the RSS. The arrival of the Prime Minister in the adjacent district of Haveri where he dwelt on the development measures undertaken by his government and a 'double engine' government in the state seems to have struck a chord with the voters.

M.R. Krishan Tulangi, a farmer in Hubbali while speaking to IANS said, "The Prime Minister has said that the government of India is purchasing urea at a cost of Rs 50 per kg and distributing it to farmers at Rs 5 per kg. This is a very important gesture on the part of the BJP government towards the farmers. This time I will vote for the BJP even though Jagadish Shettar is a good person and a winnable candidate."

In Gadag also there is support for the BJP candidates and most of those whom this correspondent spoke to said that even though the Karnataka BJP is not up to the mark and corruption allegations are there, the Prime Minister was doing good work for the country. To support him they have to vote for the BJP.

Basavaraj Pujar, a driver in Gadag told IANS, "The Prime Minister in his speech at Haveri said that our country is presently the fifth largest economy in the world and will soon become the third largest economy. This filled me with pride and I have decided to vote for the BJP."

In Belagavi, however, the presence of the Maharashtra Ekikaran Samithi (MES) which stands for the merger of the border districts of Karnataka with Maharashtra, is likely to play spoilsport to the prospects of the BJP in four seats.

In addition to the Prime Minister's roadshow and public programmes, the presence of grassroot RSS cadres is helping the BJP conduct door to door surveys, which the Congress is lacking.

Another factor is the presence of a large number of youths for campaigning for the BJP while the Congress has middle aged people in its campaign team.

With only two days left for the elections and with the campaigning ended today, the BJP and the Congress are in an all out mode to garner the maximum votes.



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Title: PM's visit, BJP's grassroots work lift party prospects in N. Karnataka

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