CM’s son: Dad’s good works will see me through

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah seems to  have taken a big political risk by sacrificing Varuna, the constituency from where he had won in 2013 and deciding to contest from Chamundeshwari  in Mysuru so that his son, Dr Yatindra Siddaramaiah can have a smooth 'Rangapravesha' into the state Assembly from Varuna which he has been winning since 2008. Despite his hectic campaign,  Dr Yatindra spoke to Shyam Sundar Vattam on his political debut. 

How well prepared are you to begin your political journey from Varuna?
I did not have any specific plan as such. But I have been touring all villages  in the last one and a half years in my father's constituency and getting work done there. I was unsure if I would fit into politics as I entered public life after the untimely demise of my brother, Rakesh. Since then the responsibility of looking after my father's constituency has fallen on me. I am enjoying it too.

When did you make up your mind to enter electoral politics?
I was not ready at all for the plunge as long as my brother was alive. But after his death, I was asked by my father to concentrate on his constituency. It did not take much time to adjust to the political field as I had been following developments at the state and national level. After I frequently visited the constituency, people started liking me and wanted me to enter politics.

What are the challenges you are likely to face in Varuna? 
You know my father had been representing this seat since 2008. I am ready to contest only from Varuna and not from any other constituency.  I have actively  worked here for the last one and a half years and I don't want to 'para drop' into another constituency and start work from scratch.  Here,  the goodwill my father has earned and the achievements of the Congress government in the last five years will benefit me. What else you do you require to win here?  

Are you aware that some former Congress leaders have vowed to defeat you and your father?
Yes, I am aware of it. But I don't care much about it as people will rise above petty issues at the time of voting. I know the BJP is accusing our government of dividing the Veerashaiva- Lingayats. I am sure that the electorate will consider the good work done by the state government and the several welfare programmes before casting their vote. In fact rural people are very happy with the performance of our government which has given me immense strength to face the Opposition candidates. 

Just for your sake, your father changed his constituency. Can he win from Chamundeshwari? 
My father is going back to his old constituency after 12 years. He toured several villages for four days and re-established his contact with Congress leaders of that constituency. He has been successful in that mission and now all these Congress leaders are working for my dad's victory. My father, who belongs to the Kuruba community, would not have won from a Vokkaliga dominated constituency many times if he had not been secular.  This shows how popular he is.

Do you agree that politics is  degenerating with caste taking centre stage and not development? 
Since I am making my debut, it is very difficult to comment. But I will assure people of my constituency that I will try to be a clean and honest politician. I will not succumb to any pressure and will try to remain an honest neta. 


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