‘Once-gallant state now backs an unknown devil’

Ashok Mitra in The Telegraph, Calcutta:

“Chikmagalur on the Nilgiri foothills was a special situation. Indira Gandhi was a damsel in distress, chivalrous Karnataka had to bail her out. It was slightly less of a moral challenge in the case of her daughter-in-law; gallantry, however, re-asserted itself and she could romp home from Bellary. But those were ancient times. The dynasty with the big D has meanwhile lost its lustre; it has also to compete with similar species at the local level.

“The people in Karnataka have anyway finally made up their mind; they had enough of the two political formations — one supposedly leaning towards the Vokkaligas and the other representing Lingayats — which played Cox and Box in the past decades in the name of running the state administration. They have now opted for the unknown devil, the Bharatiya Janata Party; what has been at work is a try-anything-once kind of practical philosophy.”

Read the full article: State of the nation

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19 Responses to “‘Once-gallant state now backs an unknown devil’”

  1. Aravind Says:

    It looks like Ashok Mitra needs a lesson in Geography. Nilgiris and Chikmagalur are way apart by hundrends of kms.

  2. Vitlan Potli Says:

    Ashok Mitra has got it wrong. The BJP also leans more towards the Lingayats and has more lingayat MLAs. The primary reason for BJP to win more seats is the overwhelming support of North Karnataka which is a Lingayat strong hold. The vokkaliga (DG & Sons) betrayal provided a catalyst to bring back a lingayat (Yeddy) at the helm. Power has oscillated between these two communities. Only the party names have changed.

  3. suri Says:

    BJP winning in Chickmangalur is anyday better than the Communists Gifting some of India’s teritory to the Chinese.

  4. Alok Says:

    Ah well the old anti-incumbency slogan:

    “Our rivals have looted, burned and destroyed the state for 45 years. Now give us a chance.”

    and the inevitable re-election slogan:

    “What our rivals did in 45 years, we have done in 5″

  5. Sathya Says:

    Ashokaa Mithra need not tell the people of Karnataka as to who shuld riule them. People don’t want two C’s here in the Karnataka. At the centre the Communists are having a grand honeymoon with the Congress. And for the sake of power they can go to any level. And what has happened to the Communism…..and all the while they were branding BJP as a communal party. Yes, when India Gandhi needed a come back the then Congress tried to show her the way, now if anybody tries like that things will be different. What is the impact of Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi on Kannadigas, NOTHING. We don’t need script readers.

  6. yella ok Says:

    Is AM saying that electing IG and her daughter – in – law were gallant acts? Go, get a life, Mr. AM. What nonsense? This is what happens when people who cant differentiate between Nilgiris and Sahyadri write with a vested interest.

    I think Bellary has come a long way from electing Sonia Gandhi to now loving Sushma Swaraj – her constant touch with Bellary shows far greater concern of a candidate who lost compared to utter neglect of a candidate who won.

    I think kannadigas should be more ashamed of electing Sonia and IG than electing a BJP govt. And, there is nothing unknown about BJP – it is crystal clear on the wall. Unknown quantities are individuals in BJP. Surely better than known congress quantities like Dharmu and kharge.

  7. Hiker Says:

    So, just because Karnataka gave a mandate to BJP, it is now a coward state? Is that what the author is inferring? Don’t know how people can come up with such ridiculous logic!

  8. Not A Witty Nick Says:

    Get Sonia Gandhi to contest in Bellary once gain… ;-)

  9. rar Says:

    yeddy is no leader of lingayats. he is a grass roots rss-bjp guy who, through both luck and persistence, is sitting in the limelight. almost none of those lingayat mlas with the bjp have strong ideological ties to hindutva.
    linagayats have been shut out by congress and jds, and the kannadiga penchant for national parties led them to start cooperating with the bjp. within a few election cycles, when k’taka bjp realizes that it will never be influential nationally, they will swing back to whatever alternatives present themselves.

  10. kaangeya Says:

    Ashok Mitra is a jackass for saying that the Left is keeping an eye on India’s sovereignty – when they are keeping mum about the aggressive land claims being made by China? The rest of the article is gibberish from a senile gasbag. Get used to it. The rest of the country is brainier than your state of Waste Bengal.

  11. mayura Says:

    Ashok Mitra is the failed finance minister in Jyoti Basu’s cabinet and was instrumental in reducing a once prosperous state, to penury in 25 years. Enough said about this moron. Also, Ashot Mitra urgently needs geography lessons. AM keep your good for nothing views/arguments to your self and your bhadralok. We kannadigas know what is good for us and our state. Thanks but no thanks

  12. orly Says:

    Look at the comments making personal attacks on the writer instead of arguing, seems like some people are really offended by the truth oh it hurts.

  13. Bangalore Boy Says:

    Commies can never think straight and right!!

  14. kaangeya Says:

    Look at the comments making personal attacks on the writer instead of arguing… Orly, pl read and then read again. If you can’t engage with the facts in this htread, read again.

  15. dodo Says:

    Ashok Mitra is kind of loony and namesdropper. Being a bengali, I am following his writing since ;ast 10-15 years. He just like any other leftist leader ,thinks, he has only got the right and faculty to think in the proper manner and what he thinks is best. He is a sophist at its worst. In his autobiography he just kept on dropping big names and also mentioned he taught at the famous Institute of Development Studies, Sussex. This fact was then contested by another left leader Biplab Bhattacharjee who was at the institute during that time. Needless to say, I haven’t come across any reply from AM against Biplab B’s clarification.

    And left’s watchful eye on India’s Sovereignty has been demostrated well when every political party worth its salt condemned China’s claim on Arunachal last March apart from CP(I)M.

  16. Pulikeshi the Last Says:

    We need more Bengali babus telling us who we are and what we think.

    Why do people assume that our voters were motivated by principles and not caste loyalty? Could Kharge have won from a non-reservation constituency?

    Those who cannot read or write cannot make intelligent decisions. Ignorance is the basis of feudalism. If you don’t believe me, look at Shankaralinge Gowda’s farcical fix.

  17. sumkirla in english Says:

    Lingayats and vokkaligas continue to dominate state plitics

    http://www.rediff.com/news/2008/may/29kgovt.htm

    The 13th Legislative Assembly in Karnataka is all set to take charge of the affairs of the state in a few days. After being under the President’s rule for a long time, Karnataka will finally have a popular government in place.

    There are certain interesting facts about the 13th Legislative Assembly in Karnataka which will be dominated once again by the Lingayats and Vokkaligas, with 59 and 51 legislators respectively. Members of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes will have 50 seats while the Brahmins will have 11.

    The parties may say that the elections were not based on caste equations, but statistics say that it was a battle between the Lingayats and the Vokkaligas.

    While Yeddyurappa was being portrayed as the Lingayat leader, H D Kumaraswamy was the leader for the Vokkaligas.

    The Congress too roped in S M Krishna at the last minute, as he is a popular leader from Bangalore, which has a crucial 28 assembly seats, and belongs to the Vokkaliga community.

    The distribution of tickets among candidates from the two communities is an indication of how closely the caste battle was fought. The Bharatiya Janata Party fielded 71 Lingayats, out of which 38 won the elections. The Congress and the Janata Dal � Secular fielded 46 and 50 Lingayats respectively, of which 19 and 4 candidates won.

    On the Vokkaliga front, the BJP fielded 42 candidates, out which 17 won. The JD-S fielded 57 Vokkaligas, out of which 15 won the elections. The Congress, on the other hand, fielded 37 Vokkaliga candidates, of which only 19 managed to win the elections.

    The Lingayats and the Vokkaligas continue to be the dominating castes, with as many as 110 seats in the 224-member Karnataka Legislative Assembly. The rest of the 114 seats in the Karnataka Legislative Assembly are shared by the SC/STs (50), Brahmins (11), Muslims (8), Christians (1) and Other Backward Classes (15).

    The rest of the seats are shared by members of various communities like Vysyas, Kurubas, Kabbaligas, Idigas, Marathas, Jains , Devadiga , Uppara and Tigala.

    The Lingayats and the Vokkaligas together constitute only 26 per cent of the state’s population. According to the Report of the Backward Classes Commission, the two communities have been dominant in Karnataka since 1956.

    Even the job scenario in the state is dominated by these two castes, with the Lingayats and Vokkaligas holding 17 and 13 per cent of total jobs respectively.

    The percentage of land held by the Lingayats and the Vokkaligas are 27 and 28 per cent respectively, the report states.

  18. Mysore Peshva Says:

    *sumkirla*

    M.V. Kamath writes:

    “How come that the BJP has grown steadily since 1985 when it had won only two seats? Over the years, it has grown consistently winning four seats on 1989, forty seats in 1994, forty four in 1999, seventy nine in 2004, topping past successes with 110 in 2008? Surely, it cannot all be a matter of caste? Caste percentages in the population have not changed, but an increased pride in Hinduism, in sanaatana dharma, irrespective of castes, has been noticeably, even if subtly, growing.

    “The bogus secularism of Congress which downgrades Hinduism in peoples’ eyes has become a burden to the party. And who on earth would believe Deve Gowda when he says that his party is ‘secular’? It is the most casteist party one has seen in Karnataka. The JD(S) is a joke, and a pathetic joke at that.”

    See See http://www.organiser.org/dynamic/modules.php?name=Content&pa=showpage&pid=241&page=8

  19. pulikeshi the last Says:

    Bring back our old Summa Kirla.

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