Mandya, August 15: Congress workers received a fillip in Mandya district on Wednesday with Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and prominent leaders of the party hitting the campaign trail for the bypolls for Mandya Lok Sabha constituency where the party has fielded actor-turned-politician Ramya.
Mr. Siddaramaiah addressed programmes throughout the day at Maddur, Malavalli and Srirangapatna.
The former Union Minister C.M. Ibrahim, Ministers M.H. Ambareesh, S.R. Patil, M.B. Patil and H.S. Mahadeva Prasad, the former Ministers Janardhan Poojary, Roshan Baig and M.S. Atmananda, the former MLAs L.R. Shivaramegowda, Kalpana Siddaraju, Nafisa Fasal, Mallajamma and Motamma participated. The Chief Minister and the party leaders sent out a message to the voters that the party was united in the district. Earlier, the party had lost the Maddur and Srirangapatna Assembly segments in the Assembly elections because of rebel activities.
The first public campaign programme was held at the Kemmannu Nale Circle Ground at 12.30 p.m. Thousands of party workers from across the district participated in the function. Ms. Kalpana Siddaraju and a few other leaders joined the party at the function.
Mr. Siddaramaiah, addressing the gathering, said that the Congress was united in the district and its aim was to ensure the victory of Ms. Ramya in the byelections. The party is confident of the voters electing Ms. Ramya, who, Mr. Siddaramaiah said, was the “daughter of Mandya”. Mr. Siddaramaiah emphasised the need for the party workers to get active across the constituency for ensuring the victory for Ms. Ramya.
The party always aimed at ensuring the welfare of the poor and downtrodden in the country. The State government has implemented a series of programmes, including Anna Bhagya and Ksheera Bhagya, for the people of underprivileged sections of society, the Chief Minister said.
The State government has also waived loans of the economically weaker sections of society under several schemes, he said.
The State government is contemplating including jowar and ragi under the public distribution system (PDS).
The government has been taking steps to help farmers. It is setting up a commission to work out scientific prices for agricultural produce, he said. “We will announce a scientific procurement price for sugarcane,” he said.
The Congress is the only party that could bring development to the district, Mr. Ambareesh said.
The Housing Minister said that the State government has implemented several schemes.
S.M. Krishna too
Mr. Siddaramaiah announced that the former Union Minister S.M. Krishna would join the election campaign on Friday.
Mr. Krishna will be in New Delhi as the Union Government is tabling a Bill in the Rajya Sabha.
The party has issued a whip and hence, Mr. Krishna will be available for campaigning only after August 16, he said.
Later, Mr. Siddaramaiah and the party leaders campaigned for Ms. Ramya at Malavalli and Srirangapatna. Local leaders and workers of the party participated.