Eighty-six-year-old JD(S) supremo H.D. Deve Gowda has returned to his fitness regimen to keep himself fighting fit for the Assembly election campaign.
The former PM’s daily routine starts at around 5:30 am and ends at around 2 am the next morning with hardly three hours of sleep squeezed in. The octogenarian politician is working hard and burning the midnight oil to bring back his party to power and make his son, Mr H.D. Kumaraswamy the next chief minister.
Come elections, Mr Gowda becomes hyperactive criss-crossing the entire state to mobilize support for his party. Having quit non-vegetarian food almost four decades ago, he survives on 'Ragi Mudde' and 'Soppina Saaru' in south Karnataka and relishes 'Jolad Rotti and salad' of north Karnataka during his tour in the North-Karnataka region. If nothing is available, he eats a few pieces of papaya and hits the bed.
Sources close to Mr Gowda told Deccan Chronicle that the JD(S) chief goes to bed and gets up early. He then does yoga for 30- 40 minutes to keep himself fit for the grilling schedule of the day. He learnt yoga from an instructor a few years ago and has been doing it daily without giving it a miss.
By 6 am, people from across the state gather in front of his house at Padmanabha Nagar in Bengaluru South. Mr Gowda spends some time addressing their grievances pertaining to the party or constituencies. He then has breakfast and sets off from his house.
Once he is on an election campaign, Mr Gowda is not too concerned about the timing of his lunch and has whatever is available around 3:30 pm. There are days when he has had his lunch at 5 pm too. His food is simple and without much masala. Knowing his love for ragi balls and soppina saaru, local party leaders get it prepared and supplied from their homes.
The JD(S) supremo prefers to drink hot water to avoid throat infections as he has to save his voice to address public meetings. Occasionally, he sips a cups of hot tea or two to keep himself awake.
"Being a vegetarian, it's easy to arrange food for him in any part of the state. While travelling, he has a look at all English and Kannada dailies to keep abreast of developments in state, national and international politics. Dinner time is flexible depending on the situation. It gets delayed if the public meeting ends very late. His dinner comprises of a little rice, plain dal and vegetable salad. Many a time, he has gone to sleep after having two or three slices of papaya", sources revealed.
After hectic electioneering, he hits the bed between 2 am and 3 am.
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