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Tamil Nadu Assembly Elections | Two Karnataka politicians campaign for party candidates in Coimbatore South

Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge, campaigned for his party candidate Mayura S. Jayakumar and Bengaluru South MP L.S. Tejasvi Surya campaigned for part candidate Vanathi Srinivasan.

Two Karnataka politicians belonging to opposite camps were in the textile town on Friday, campaigning for their respective party candidates in Coimbatore South Assembly constituency. Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha and Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge, campaigned for his party candidate Mayura S. Jayakumar and BJP youth wing president and Bengaluru South MP L.S. Tejasvi Surya campaigned for part candidate Vanathi Srinivasan.

Mr. Kharge, who addressed journalists, said voters in Tamil Nadu should reject the AIADMK-BJP coalition because the party was a “poisonous snake” and should not be allowed to enter the State. Having seen the party in Karnataka, he was warning the voters here to not touch the party.

The party was bad not just for Tamil Nadu but also for entire South India, he said and added that “Congress-mukt South India” was not even a remote possibility as the party had very strong roots. “As they say in Kannada, how much even you try to bury us [Congress], we will rise like a seed.”

He claimed the ‘A’ in ADMK no longer represented Anna; it denoted Amit Shah, to whom the Chief Minister and Deputy Chief Minister subservient. “The party had lost all its ideological moorings,” he commented.

Presenting a long list of achievements of the UPA government under Manmohan Singh, he said it was unfair of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to ask what the Congress had done for the country’s development in the last 70 years.

It was Mr. Modi who was not ruling by the Constitution. His party had engineered defections and toppled governments, one after another with Puducherry being the latest example. But the same might not happen in Tamil Nadu, he went on to add.

BJP leader Mr. Surya said Mr. Kharge who could not win the Kalaburagi (Gulbarga) seat had no right to comment on the BJP in Tamil Nadu. Congress as an idea, a party and leadership had lost relevance and therefore Congress-mukht South India could be a possibility.

The BJP was going at the cost of UDF in Kerala and would enter the Assembly there in significant numbers. The party would sweep the West Bengal election, win Puducherry and retain power in Assam, he felt.

In Tamil Nadu, the party would win a good number of seats, enter the Assembly and work towards freeing temples from government control, as mentioned in the party manifesto, he claimed. But the fight in Tamil Nadu was not just political but also ideological as it wanted to put an end of ‘Periyar-ism’.

Mr Surya said it was only natural that a dynast like Udhayanidhi Stalin would talk ill of former BJP leaders Sushma Swaraj, Arun Jaitley and cricketer Saurav Ganguly.

“The sense of entitlement, arrogance and ignorance that come with being a dynast the DMK culture have made him comment the way he did against the BJP leaders and the cricketer,” he charged.

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