Bagalakote: The Dharna launched to demand Mahalingapura of Bagalakote District as Taluk, crossed 150 days and protestors seemed to be determined.
The members of Mahalingapura Taluk Horata Samiti met the leader of the opposition Siddaramaiah at his official residence in Bengaluru recently. The members urged Siddaramaiah to raise his voice for Mahalingapura in the ongoing session.
The members, irrespective of affiliation to the political parties, are actively participating in over five-month-long protests in the town. Enraged against the government for not declaring it as a new Taluk – the Horata Samiti had observed bandh about three times since the protest was launched in the town.
At present Mahalingapura town comes under Rabkavi-Banhatti taluka, which is the new Taluk, and has a population of over 30,000. There are nine talukas including the newly announced Ilkal and Rabkavi-Banhatti.
Dhareppa Sanglikar, Working President of Mahalingapura Taluka Horata Samiti, pointed out, “We have been protesting for the past three decades to upgrade Mahalingapura town to Taluk but not receiving overwhelming response from the government. The agitation was started when veteran politician S. M. Krishna was the Chief Minister of the State. The then CM S. M. Krishna government promised of announcing it as a new Taluk but nothing concrete happened.”
“The subsequent governments made promises but did not deliver. In the Siddaramaiah regime, the government announced 49 new Taluks but failed to consider Mahalingapura. The government unscientifically announced Terdal as a new Taluk, where it does not have many requirements including villages and geographical conditions.”
“After protests intensified the state government promised that they would upgrade it to Hobli. However, we will continue the protest until the government announces it as a new Taluk,” cautioned Sangilkar.
S. M. Patil, Vice-President of Horata Samiti, said, “Mahalingapura is famous for jaggery and other business in the region. It has good educational institutions and hospitals. The town fulfils all the requirements that are necessary to declare it a Taluk. We appeal to the government to announce it as new taluka or else it has to face the consequences.”
Siddu Savadi, MLA of Terdal, said, “The previous government announced 49 new talukas, where most of them are yet to get proper infrastructure including buildings for the offices. The Chief Minister has promised to fulfil the demands; however, the government would declare it as Hobli before announcing it a new Taluk. I have complete support for this agitation.”