Ahead of the 269th birth anniversary of 18th Century Mysore ruler Tipu Sultan, Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy sparked off row with his decision to stay away from the official celebrations in Bengaluru Saturday, November 10, 2018. While the state government's declaration to celebrate Tipu Jayanti was a tight slap on the face of communal forces, the absence of CM Kumaraswamy's name on the invitation card led to heated debates across Karnataka.
According to a statement, issued by the Chief Minister's Office, in the view of doctors’ advice, Kumaraswamy will take three days’ rest and is not going to attend any official ceremony till November 11.
In situations like this, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Friday accused the Congress-JDS government of "duplicity" and "pseudo secularism" and said, "The absence of Mr Kumaraswamy from the Tipu birth anniversary celebrations exposes the duplicity and the pseudo secularism of the ruling alliance".
The name of HD Kumaraswamy "was not even printed" on the invitation card for the birth centenary function in state capital Bengaluru. "He has no ideals, he just wants to be in power," State BJP spokesperson S Prakash said.
For long, the BJP has opposed the Karnataka government celebrating the birth anniversary of Tipu Sultan, saying "the annual event is a gimmick to appease the Muslim community".
While people in Karnataka consider Tipu Sultan a valiant freedom fighter and a divisive figure in the history of the state, for BJP and other right-wing groups, he was nothing but a tyrant leader, who allegedly demolished temples and churches during his tenure.
The BJP, which has urged the Congress-JDS coalition government to drop the plan to celebrate Tipu Jayanti, is gearing up to stage agitations across Karnataka, including Bengaluru, Mysore and Kodagu among others.
In the wake of this raging controversies, security has been tightened across Karnataka and Section 144 has been imposed at several places including Kodagu, Hubli and Dharwad cities from 6 am on November 10 to 7 am on November 11. Kumaraswamy has also given direction to police officers to take care of the common men.
However, the BJP leaders said the protests will be peaceful and it has nothing to do with communal violence as they honour the Muslim people for their sacrifice for the nation.