The 23rd Chief Minister of Karnataka was born on 12th August 1948 to Siddarame Gowda and Boramma to a family belonging to farming. The young boy did not receive any education till the age of 10 but later in life he completed his B.Sc and holds a Bachelor Degree in law from Mysore University.
Siddaramaiah who is not only infamous but is also popular for completing a 5 year (2013-2018) tenure as the Chief Minister of Karnataka. Yes it is a surprising fact, because the last Chief Minister who completed his tenure was D Devraj Urs and that was 40 years ago. Before playing the crucial role as the Chief Minister of Karnataka, he held important positions like Deputy Chief Minister of Karnataka, Minister for Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Service, Minister of Finance, Minister of Transport and Minister of Sericulture.
The man is known for his agnostic views held a prominent image when he took his Chief Minister oath in the name of “Truth” instead of “God”. He was chosen as the Chief Minister because he was known to be a strong man with unbreakable will and an amazing enthusiasm.
During his tenure he has been critical about his opposition party BJP. He has always made statements that the BJP has never done anything for the Scheduled Class and Other Backward Classes. In one of his many campaigns he has also blamed BJP for gaining benefits by creating differences in the name of caste and religion.
On the other hand he explained what he did for them, the “Anna Bhagya” a scheme which was introduced to eradicate poverty and hunger of the people belonging to BPL. He even elucidated what was the main aim of “Ksheera Bhagya”. He clarified that this scheme was to encourage the children belonging to low income families to go to government aided school and not just receive education but also nutritional food. He made it a point not to forget the farmers like how the former Chief Minister of Karnataka B.S. Yeddyurappa did. Siddaramaiah explicated his MSP scheme, that is letting his government procure food-grains in Minimum Supply Income as soon as the harvested season began. Which let farmers buy the food-grains in a much cheaper price. He provided interest free loans to farmers and increased the incentives of the milk producers.
Siddaramaiah a man who lost one of his son in 2016, yet he didn’t break down and worked for his state. He played a huge gamble just before the elections of 2018. He played with fire, when he granted the religious minority status for the Lingayat community. Many people commented on this move by even comparing him to Robert Clive who practiced the “Divide and Rule” policy. The BJP reprimanded this decision made by Siddaramaiah, they said, they would never divide a community for political reasons.
This grant caused a religious turbulence among the Lingayat community which got the religious minority status and the Veerashaiva community as they didn’t receive the same.
The disadvantage of this move was people belonging to SC who declare themselves under Lingayat sect would lose their constitutional rights because according to the constitution an SC can belong only to Hinduism , Bhuddhism or Sikhism along with their sect.
But the bigger question here is, even after so many positive schemes and good governance still Congress failed to win the majority in the polls of 2018. Even after trying to win votes through his Lingayat gamble, Congress was still not able to win the majority. What went so wrong that Mohan Das Pai, Ex-CFO of Infosys made a statement such as “Siddaramaiah’s 5 years will be of an indifferent government with no investments, no jobs. An opportunity completely wasted. “
Was it the government’s poor handling of drinking water supply and power supply? The uncontrollable drought situation? For degenerating law and order in the state? The augmentation of corruption? Or was it that Chief Minister of Karnataka, Siddaramaiah who lost his enthu and becoming the Chief Minister became his only ambition.
The list of failures of this government is longer than the achievements they have made. Congress along with JD(S) is has received another chance in disguise to prove their Governance. Will H.D Kumaraswamy be able to win the heart of the people of Karnataka? Will Kumaraswamy too be able to break the Chief Minister jinx and complete his tenure? Will the work of Kumaraswamy lead to the rise of JD(S) or Congress or will it be another messed up collaboration and be a hidden win for BJP.
Let’s wait and find out what this newly found friendship of Congress and JD(S) does to Karnataka after 5 years.
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