‘Rajeev Beda’ campaign intensifies, BJP undeterred

Bengaluru: Although a campaign against its decision to field a non-Kannadiga, industrialist Rajeev Chandrashekar for the Rajya Sabha from Karnataka, is drawing enormous support on social media, the BJP seems undeterred and defended its choice of candidate on Tuesday.  

The Twitter hashtag ‘Rajeev Beda’ and  Facebook campaigns against the industrialist are similar to the “Venkaiah Sakaiah” campaign on social media a couple of years ago against the BJP's decision to field the then Urban Development Minister and present Vice President of the country, M.Venkaiah Naidu for the Rajya Sabha poll from Karnataka. Mr Naidu was eventually replaced by Ms Nirmala Sitharaman, now the country's Defence Minister. 

The BJP did try to avoid a  backlash this time by announcing Mr  Chandrashekar’s name just 12 hours before  filing of nominations for the RS poll, but the strategy doesn’t seem to have worked.  

Speaking to Deccan Chronicle,  senior BJP leader, C.T. Ravi said Mr. Chandrashekar  was a Kannadiga as he was brought up in Karnataka, had studied here and lived in the state for the last 40 years.

“Moreover, he has been leading several campaigns related to Bengaluru and Karnataka. The Rajeev Beda campaign is  politically motivated, and the party will not be deterred by such a malicious move of the ruling Congress,” he said. 

Clarifying that Mr Chandrashekar was the only  party nominee, he said it was only a rumour that  three other names had been suggested along with his to the central leadership. 

Sources close to Mr  Chandrashekar, meanwhile, said there were two main reasons why he was chosen by the BJP for the Rajya Sabha. 

The first was that he was NDA convener for the Kerala unit and the party was  eyeing that state next after its victory in the north east states. Also,  the party was keen on winning 25 of the 28 assembly seats in Bengaluru in the coming state poll and believed he could deliver the goods.

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Note from Kannada.Club :

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