'First major lead' of BJP win: Shah on reports of K'taka CM changing constituency

Amid reports that Chief Minister Siddaramaiah might shift his constituency for the May 12 Karnataka Assembly polls, BJP president Amit Shah today said this was the "first major lead" that the saffron party would win the election.

"Those who were boasting themselves are now being forced to change their constituency," he said, without naming Siddaramaiah.

"This is the first major lead in the first stage of the poll campaign. We are going to win the election and form the government under the leadership of (state BJP president) B S Yeddyurappa," Shah added.

He was referring to reports that the chief minister might contest from Badami in Bagalkot district in north Karnataka, as against his plans to return to the Assembly from Chamundeshwari in Mysuru.

Speculation has been rife that Siddaramaiah is looking for another constituency amid reports that it will not be an easy poll battle for him from Chamundeshwari.

Siddaramaiah, who represents Varuna in Mysuru after it became a constituency in 2008 following delimitation, has expressed his intention to contest again from Chamundeshwari that gave him "political birth".

Making his debut in the Assembly in 1983, Siddaramaiah had got elected from Chamundeshwari on a Lok Dal Party ticket. He has won the seat five times and tasted defeat twice.

Shah was speaking to reporters after paying tributes to Kittur Rani Chennamma, who had fought against the British, at her memorial.

There was anger among the poor, Dalits, tribals, farmers and others against the Congress government in Karnataka "for doing nothing for them", he claimed.

Shah assured the people that Karnataka will see development at a rapid pace under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the Centre and Yeddyurappa in the state.

Rani Chennamma was the queen of the erstwhile princely state of Kittur. She had fought against the British rule, leading an armed rebellion against it in 1824.

"It is an honour to be here to pay my tributes to Rani Chennamma. This place has a glorious past of the first freedom struggle of India," Shah said.

The BJP chief is on a two-day tour of Belagavi, Dharwad, Gadag and Bagalkote districts since yesterday as part of his sixth round of campaigning.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)