Vijayapura: The ward-wise reservation and delimitation announced by the Government for City Corporation elections, has disappointed the Muslims leaders, mainly the aspirants who are planning to contest in the coming polls.
The leaders and the Former Muslim Corporators believed that the Government has reorganised the wards in the manner that divides the Muslims voters from the Muslim dominated localities. This, they feel would scatter the Muslim votes which will affect the winning prospects of Muslim candidates as they will now have to largely depend on non-Muslims candidates for the victory.
“This is a deliberate and planned attempt made by the ruling BJP Government to divide the Muslims votes in order to bring more non-Muslim candidates to the City Corporation,” alleged Former Corporator Moinuddin Balagi. He said that all the 35 wards of the City have been divided where Hindu voters remain united which could help the BJP candidate to win. He claimed that with the new division, a maximum of 4 to 5 Muslims candidates will win compared to at least a dozen candidates who were winning and becoming Corporators in the past.
Echoing similar sentiments, another Former Corporator, Abdul Razak Horti said that the Muslims have become scapegoats between the political rivalry of MLA Basanagouda Patil Yatnal and his bête noir Appu Pattanshsetty, a Former MLA.
“Not just Muslims but even Vijayapura are suffering because of their rivalry. If you talk only about Muslims, surely the ward wise division has been done in a manner that will adversely affect the Muslims in the elections,” he said. He even said that the division will also have a negative impact on the Congress party in Vijayapura City as the majority of the Muslims have been supporting the Congress for years.
“If the Congress wants to retain its strength in the City, the leaders must take a strong stand to get the division revised,” he said.
When asked whether he is planning to take any legal course against the order, Horti said that he personally will not go to Court, however he will support anybody who is willing to seek legal remedy.
Admitting that the delimitation has indeed divided Muslim votes, veteran Congress Leader and MLA M. B. Patil however said that the Muslims are not too unhappy with the reservation announcement. “I have already met Muslim leaders and they have expressed their views. We will see what best can be done at the Government level to ensure that the Muslims get justice,” he said.