With barely a month left for the 2023 Karnataka Assembly polls to be announced, BJP national president JP Nadda launched the Vijaya Sankalpa Ratha Yatre from the premises of the Mahadeshwara Temple, atop Male Mahadeshwara Hills in Chamarajanagar, on Wednesday, 1 March.
He was accompanied by BS Yediyurappa, BJP Parliamentary Board member and former chief minister, Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai, Union Minister of State for Agriculture Shobha Karandlaje and BJP state president Nalin Kumar Kateel.
‘People will bless BJP’
“With the Vijaya Sankalpa Yatre beginning from an auspicious place and with the grace of god, I’m confident about the party getting the blessings of the people in the upcoming assembly polls,” Nadda told a gathering after offering prayers at the Male Mahadeshwara temple.
Inaugurated the Vijaya Sankalpa Ratha Yatra in Karnataka today. The yatra will cover all 224 assembly constituencies of the state, bringing our vision of progress and prosperity to every doorstep. Join us in this journey towards a better tomorrow ! pic.twitter.com/CxyMi53Fgu
— Jagat Prakash Nadda (@JPNadda) March 1, 2023
“The country under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi is marching ahead with strength and he has changed the political dimension of the country from ‘casteism, vote bank and dynasty politics’ to taking everyone together with the motto, ‘Sabka saath, sabka vikas, sabka vishwas, sabka prayas‘ (Support of all, progress of all, effort of all),” Nadda said.
“Today, several prominent positions in the country are occupied by personalities from the SC/ST community, and president of India Droupadi Murmu belongs to the tribal community,” Nadda said, pointing out that the Modi government has worked for the development of all sections of society, especially the poor and downtrodden.
“There has been a 190 per cent increase in the tribal budget under the BJP government. The government will also set up Ekalavya Vidyalaya in tribal areas, and other schemes and programmes for the betterment and upliftment of the tribal community,” said Nadda, in a bid to win over people of Soliga tribe that took part in the event. He said the government also planned to open Tribal Research Centres.
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“I want to assure that under Modi, with Yediyurappa’s blessings and Bommai’s efforts we will bring changes in the lives and livelihood of the people here,” added Nadda.
In his address, Bommai said he had made sankalpa (pledge) before Male Mahadeshwara, and sought the lord’s blessings once again for the BJP in this Assembly polls. “I am confident that it will be fulfilled,” he said.
“With the Vijaya Sankalpa Ratha Yatra, our confidence and strength has been doubled. This yatra will take BJP towards a thumping victory,” he added, while claiming that the. BJP had enriched the lives of the people by bringing many pro-people programmes and schemes. “I am confident that we will win the hearts of the people,” he added.
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Yediyurappa dubbed the rival Congress “a sinking ship”, and said the grand old party’s strategies would not succeed against “eminent leaders like Modi, [Union Home Minister Amit] Shah and Nadda”.
“No power can stop BJP from coming back to power. I am confident that BJP will win over 140 Assembly seats,” he added.
Of the four Assembly segments in Chamarajanagar, two each are held by the BJP and Congress. Kollegal (SC) N Mahesh had won under Bahujan Samaj Party in the 2018 Assembly segment, before switching loyalty to the BJP in 2021.
Yatre in all 224 Assembly seats
Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh is scheduled to launch the ratha yatre from Kittur in Belagavi on 2 March, while Shah will launch the event from Basavakalyan in Bidar and Devanahalli, near Bengaluru, on 3 March.
The yatre will be held in all the 224 Assembly segments in the next 25 days, traversing about 8,000 km across the state. The ruling BJP government will also hold 80 public rallies, 75 conventions and 150 road shows.
Karnataka election in-charge Dharmendra Pradhan, his aide Mansukh Mandaviya, and Smriti Irani are among 50 central leaders and union ministers expected to take part in the nearly one-month-long yatre, which will conclude in Davanagere on 25 March at an event to be attended by the prime minister.