It appears that Varuna constituency in Mysuru will see the ‘battle of the first sons’ of Karnataka politics as BJP is looking to field BS Yeddyurappa’s son Vijayendra against Chief Minister Siddaramaiah’s son Dr. Yathindra in the upcoming assembly elections in the state.
While speculation was rife that Vijayendra would make his electoral debut this year, the decision to field him at Varuna was reportedly taken when BJP leaders met at a luxury resort on the outskirts of Bengaluru on Friday.
The Congress meanwhile has already confirmed that Siddaramaiah, who contested from Varuna in 2013, will be contesting from Chamundeshwari, from where he has been elected five times in the past.
This paves the way for Dr. Yathindra, Siddaramaiah’s youngest son, to take up the mantle from his father at Varuna.
Neither Yathindra nor Vijayendra are currently active in politics. The upcoming elections will mark Yathindra’s entry into electoral politics. “He has already held several village-level meetings in the constituency and has undertaken developmental works to woo the electorate. During his meetings, he has repeatedly requested the people of Varuna to bless him this time, signalling his intention to enter electoral politics,” a Congress source had told TNM earlier.
Varuna constituency, which is in the JD(S) and Congress-dominated Mysuru region, has a large Lingayat population.
Parties estimate that there around 60,000 Lingayat votes, 42,000 SC votes, 24,000 ST votes, 33,000 Kurba votes, and 13,000 Vokkaliga votes in the constituency.
The Congress believes that Siddaramaiah’s popularity combined with his decision to give minority status and recommend separate religion status to Lingayats will swing the vote in their direction. The BJP thinks that Lingayats and Veerashaiva Lingayats, who are mainly followers of the Suttur mutt, will continue to support Yeddyurappa, a veteran Lingayat leader.