With Hindutva emerging as the main poll plank for BJP and Congress in Karnataka, state chief minister Siddaramaiah, along with other senior Congress leaders of the state, on Saturday met Congress chief Rahul Gandhi at his residence.
Gandhi decided on the campaign after meeting with party leaders from his state, including Siddaramaiah, state party unit president G Parameshwara, working president Dinesh Gundu Rao, Leader of the Congress in the Lok Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge, senior leaders Veerappa Moily, KH Muniappa, Oscar Fernandes and party in charge of Karnataka KC Venugopal.
He also denied that there was an anti-incumbency factor for the Congress and said the party would retain power in the southern state by winning the polls with a "comfortable majority".
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Mr Siddharamaiah said, "The BJP "has nothing to talk about" and "raising irrelevant issues".
Rahul Gandhi has indicated his readiness to launch an intense campaign for the Karnataka Assembly elections, as he had done in Gujarat previous year. Our government is not facing any anti-incumbency.
On January 10, the Chief Minister during a campaign rally had stated, "Hindutva should be in our hearts and not on our plates or the food we eat". That (Hindtva) is the only issue they have. Amit Shah is also raising the same issue.
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She said: "I want to share this award with all the women and men who stand for what's right, standing for those who can't stand or speak for themselves".
"The BJP is raising irrelevant issues in Karnataka". I said I am also a Hindu but a humane Hindu. The protesters, which included Lok Sabha MP Shobha Karandlaje, condemned Siddaramaiah's remarks and asked him to apologise.
This was the first meeting called by the Congress president on the Karnataka polls after last month's Gujarat Assembly election.
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