Friday, 10 April, 2020


'Karnataka election is about Hindu-Muslim religions'

BJP MLA Sanjay Patil represents the Belagavi Rural constituency in north Karnataka near the border with Maharashtra 'Karnataka election is about Hindu-Muslim religions'
Kristine Garrett | 20 April, 2018, 11:49

Less than a month before the state Assembly elections, Karnataka Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA) has triggered a new controversy. It is however, not clear from the video when and where it was recorded. Patil was addressing a small crowd. Patil, who has often courted controversies for his rabble-rousing speeches, said, "India is a Hindu country and there must be a Ram Mandir". After Union Minister Anantkumar Hegde who created a row over his comment about the Constitution, now Sanjay Patil, has been captured on camera making polarising statements by invoking religion at what appears to be an election rally. "And who wants Shivaji Maharaj and Ram Mandir and Shambhaji Maharaj should vote for the BJP".

"Keeping a hand on my chest, I say loudly, this is Bharat, this is the country of Hindus, and this is the country where Ram was born", Patil said, drawing loud cheers.

He went on to add, "I am Sanjay Patil, I am Hindu, this is a Hindu rashtra and we want to build the Ram temple".

He then turned his speech around to attack his Congress rival for the coming elections, Lakshmi Hebbalkar. If Lakshmi Hebbalikar says she can build the mandir - vote for her. But she won't do it. "She will build a mosque, a Babri Masjid".

The BJP leader is also party's MLA from Karnataka's Belagavi constituency. He had defeated Hebbalkar in the 2013 contest.

In the video, which has now gone viral, Patil as a part of his poll pitch is heard saying, "This election is not about road, gutter or drinking water..."

Karnataka goes to polls on May 12 while counting of votes would be held on May 15. Karnataka Assembly has 225 seats but voting takes place for 224 as one seat in reserved for the Anglo-Indian community and the representative is nominated by the Karnataka governor.

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