Bangalore: The BJP in Karnataka has reasons to smile.
Earlier, the Congress goofed up during distribution of tickets in Bangalore, which has 28 Assembly segments. Now, Gujarat Chief Minister, Narendra Modi, who addressed a public rally in Bangalore on Sunday has boosted the morale of the party cadre by equating Gujarat to Karnataka.
In Karnataka, BJP is facing an uphill task to regain the throne after a series of corruption allegations that saw former chief minister B S Yeddyurappa leave and form his own outfit -- Karnataka Janata Party.
Bangalore, which has 28 Assembly segments constitute more than 10% of the total seats in Karnataka Assembly.
Till the time the tickets were distributed, BJP looked down in Bangalore, struggling to save even get half of what it won in the 2008 elections -- BJP had won 17 seats, leaving 10 to Congress.
This time, Congress goofed up during the distribution of tickets in at least nine Assembly segments, hurting its own prospects.
On Sunday, Narendra Modi, who silenced a frenzied mob with his fiery speech in Bangalore, equated Karnataka's situation to that one faced by Gujarat 12 years ago.
"Lotus (BJP) started blooming simultaneously in both Karnataka and Gujarat. Gujarat has undergone a similar situation, which is being faced by Karnataka now. Poll pundits may write us off, but 12 years have passed in Gujarat and the BJP is still going strong,'' he said.
With Modi raking up development in BJP ruled governments in the country, the party is expected to make its best pitch in cosmopolitan Bangalore, which is unfazed with corruption issues.
A crowd of over 30,000 waited for more than two hours, braving the rain. Comforting the BJP, which is facing maladministration charges during its last five years of rule, Modi said that if there was any worst government in India, it is the government in Delhi.
"Look at Delhi, which has all forms of government. It has state government, central government, high court, supreme court and everything. However, look at the scams it is mired in. Can anyone see any kind of administration in central government? The developments are taking place only in states ruled by BJP," he said.
Modi did not miss the opportunity to take a dig at Congress -- especially Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi.
"Be wary of leaders, who are born with a golden spoon in their mouth. In Jaipur, a mother says that power is poison. Two months later, son says he wants power in Karnataka too," he said.
Modi also recalled the resolutions passed by AICC during the Jaipur session that the Congress will stop dynasty politics and said that the party would not give ticket to people with criminal background. Modi questioned if the Congress had denied tickets to sons, kiths and kins of senior leaders?
Besides, he also asked the Congress leaders to introspect on the number of people with criminal background, who managed to get a party ticket.
Taking a dig at Congress, which has not declared its chief ministerial candidate for Karnataka, Modi said: "We don't want a hand without a face. Let the face come out.''
JD(S) candidate arrested in Tumkur
In other Karnataka-related news, a JD(S) candidate was held in Tumkur district, bordering Bangalore, for alleged violation of the code of conduct.
JD(S) candidate Huli Naikar and his close associate Govindaraju were arrested. The two went inside a place of worship on Sunday and were campaigning for a JD(S) candidate in Tumkur town. The cases were booked against both and they were later released on bail.
MLA's son-in-law's house raided
In the Devadurga Assembly constituency, Raichur, the Election Vigilance officials raided the house of Venkatesh Poojari, son-in-law of candidate and sitting MLA Shivananda Naik. The raids were conducted after a tip off that Poojari had hoarded money in his house. Election Officials declined to disclose the amount they recovered from the house.