I won’t compromise on principles of secularism: Siddaramiah

Bengaluru: A day after both Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy and Deputy Chief Minister G. Parameshwar gave Tipu Jayanti celebrations a miss, former chief minister Siddaramiah posted a cryptic tweet in Kannada on Sunday, which talked about him making compromises for the good of the people.

Roughly translated in Kannada, the tweet read like this: “Sometimes compromises need to be made for the good of the people. Even I could have, but I do not compromise on the fundamental principle of secularism. I don't care.” Political leaders on the condition of anonymity maintained that this was Mr Siddaramaiah's way of subtly expressing his displeasure over both leaders not attending the mega event, that was planned and executed by him since 2015 onwards.

It is well known that Mr Kumaraswamy,  has never been a vocal supporter of Tipu Jayanti celebrations initiated by Congress leader Siddaramaiah. He chose to skip Saturday's Tipu Jayanti celebrations owing to ill health, which he had done last month too when the state government organized Valmiki Jayanti. Although, the CM's media managers did their best to initiate damage control measures by issuing a statement, it has not gone well with Muslim leaders as well as Mr Siddaramaiah's staunch supporters. 

The state BJP has questioned the intention of the Congress party in holding the celebrations when the state CM himself was missing. "While the Cong-JD(S) govt celebrates a tyrant, Tipu, the CM himself goes into hiding. What is the point in celebrating the jayanti of a fanatic when the CM himself abandons a government function. Glorifying a mass murderer just for vote bank clearly shows the mindset of this govt," it tweeted.

The Tipu Jayanti celebrations, which began in 2015, have been marked by protests every year. While Tipu Sultan is considered a freedom fighter by the state government, the BJP sees him as a ‘religious bigot’.

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