Siddaramaiah recently met with former ministers HC Mahadevappa and CM Ibrahim, who were at the forefront of the AHINDA movement earlier.

Siddaramaiah says will relaunch AHINDA movement in Karnataka ahead of 2023 pollsPTI
news Politics Saturday, August 14, 2021 - 11:39

Congress leader Siddaramaiah is all set to launch the AHINDA (minority communities, backward classes and Dalits) movement across Karnataka ahead of local rural body elections, party sources told IANS on Friday, August 13. The Congress officials said that Siddaramaiah will launch the movement to emerge as the leader of oppressed communities ahead of the 2023 Assembly elections. Siddaramaiah, who met former ministers HC Mahadevappa and CM Ibrahim, who were at the forefront of the AHINDA movement earlier, on Friday (August 13) demanded that the caste census of the state must be made public.

AHINDA is an acronym for the Kannada words Alpasankhyataru (Minorities), Hindulidavaru (Backward Classes) and Dalitaru (Dalits). The term was coined by the state’s first backward class leader Devraj Urs, which was later reinvigorated by Siddaramaiah. This had also led the party to victory in 2013 State Assembly polls. The Karnataka government in 2015 undertook the second-ever caste census in independent India. However, the caste census ran into controversy after the finding purportedly suggested Muslims made up the second largest population in Karnataka, and not the Lingayat community. In spite of the state government spending Rs 168 crore on the exercise, the report has never been made public or presented in the Assembly till date.

“The report was incomplete when I was the Chief Minister. Neither HD Kumaraswamy nor BS Yediyurappa released the report. What is preventing the government from presenting the report in Assembly? I support the release of the report,” Siddaramaiah said. He added that the office bearer of Most Backward Castes Awareness Forum had met him, and he advised them to move the court. "The census includes information of all categories of people. The communities need to know where they stand,” he said.

Are Dalits the biggest caste group in Karnataka? Census results trigger debate, political panic

Party insiders claim that the caste census will show the population of Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and Other Backward Classes to be higher than dominant Lingayat and Vokkaliga castes in Karnataka. Siddaramaiah, already established as a leader of backward classes, wants to garner the support of these communities by launching the AHINDA movement. Siddaramaiah is planning to launch the movement ahead of the 2023 Assembly polls to send a message to Congress high command that he can be the Chief Ministerial face. He is presently being pitted against state party president DK Shivakumar.

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