Further Hindutva infrastructure: Karnataka’s BJP follows UP path

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s two-day tour of Karnataka from Monday is the first since the BJP carried out a change of guard in the state last July replacing veteran BS chief Yediyurappa with Basavaraj Bommai. The two-day tour is seen as a sign that the BJP is pushing its development agenda to the forefront of public attention ahead of the 2023 assembly elections, implementing a strategy that has worked for it in Uttar Pradesh.

Modi is set to inaugurate infrastructure projects and dedicate some existing projects to the nation before attending a World Yoga Day event in Mysuru on Tuesday.

“The BJP’s strategy ahead of the polls in all states is to highlight development projects through the Prime Minister in the last round before the polls. The Prime Minister’s visit to unveil several projects in Karnataka is part of the strategy ahead of the state elections,” a source told BJP.

The highlight of the infrastructure push is a Bengaluru commuter rail project valued at Rs 15,767 crore that has been around on paper for over 30 years. Prime Minister Modi will lay the foundation stone for the project, which aims to provide public transport connectivity to the suburbs of Bengaluru and the city’s satellite towns.

The Prime Minister will also lay the foundation stone for two railway projects and dedicate four ongoing railway projects to the nation, including 100% electrification of the Konkan Railway at a cost of Rs 1,287 crore. It will also lay the foundation stone for five road link projects around Bengaluru with a total length of 186 km and an estimated cost of Rs 7,231 crore.

Modi arrived around 11:55 a.m. at Yelahanka Indian Air Force base and flew to the Indian Institute of Science by helicopter to inaugurate a brain cell research center established at a cost of Rs 450 cr by the co-founder and former CEO of Infosys Ltd Kris Gopalakrishnan and lay the foundation stone of an 850-bed research hospital funded by technology company MindTree.

The Prime Minister was also expected to dedicate 150 industrial training institutes to the nation which have been given technological upgrades at a cost of Rs 4,736 crore, and will also inaugurate the Babasaheb Dr BR Ambedkar School of Economics University (BASE), which was originally designed and developed. by the previous state government led by Congress.

“A dual-engine government is definitely beneficial. Many projects go smoothly if Delhi’s gates are open. The policies are framed in Delhi, it is the international gateway. Only a dual-engine government can help states achieve international infrastructure standards,” Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai said ahead of the Prime Minister’s visit. The state has benefited from Prime Minister Modi’s development vision, he added.

The BJP’s strategy is the same as that which worked for it in Uttar Pradesh, where the development agenda, alongside a Hindutva push, subsumed caste identities and patronage politics to aid the party. overcome anti-incumbency in elections earlier this year.

Bommai said earlier this year that the big takeaway for Karnataka from the poll’s verdict in four states, including UP, was that “caste-based politics has been defeated by principle-based politics” and that people had accepted the Hindutva policy to a large extent.

“We have the strength of Modi ji’s reputation with us. We have the strength of our programs and the strength of our organization. If we work together and move forward, we can set the narrative and the agenda. We can come to power by our own forces in 2023. I am fully confident,” Bommai said earlier this year while praising BJP leaders from Karnataka who have been deployed for electoral work in UP, Punjab, Uttarakhand and Goa.

Despite the inauguration of many centrally funded projects by the Prime Minister on Monday, the Karnataka government is lagging behind in the implementation of several projects in Bangalore. “There are still a lot of projects to execute. Most of these projects are on hold due to vested interests and pressures, lack of political will and administrative problems. Strict follow-up is necessary as the speedy execution of these projects is essential for the party to win the electoral support of the citizens,” a BJP leader said.

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