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1-min read

Why BJP Feels That Election in This Karnataka Taluk is Between Allah and Ram

BJP MLA Sunil Kumar, who represents Karkala in coastal Karnataka, said that since the sitting MLA of Bantwal -- Congress's Ramanath Rai -- has always talked about how he has won because of support from the Muslim community, the voters of Bantwal have to decide this time whether they want to vote for Allah or Lord Rama.

Deepa Balakrishnan | CNN-News18deepab18

Updated:January 23, 2018, 7:38 PM IST
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Why BJP Feels That Election in This Karnataka Taluk is Between Allah and Ram
BJP MLA Sunil Kumar was addressing a rally in Kalladka village in Bantwal on Tuesday. (Photo: CNN-News 18)
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Bengaluru: The Assembly election in Bantwal taluk will not be fought between the Congress and the BJP, but between Allah and Rama, a BJP MLA said at a party rally in this coastal Karnataka town.

BJP MLA Sunil Kumar, who represents Karkala in coastal Karnataka, was speaking at a rally in Kalladka village in Bantwal where he said that since the sitting MLA of Bantwal -- Congress's Ramanath Rai -- has always talked about how he has won because of support from the Muslim community, the voters of Bantwal have to decide this time whether they want to vote for Allah or Lord Rama.

"Rai has always supported the Muslim community, so he is Allah. You all decide if you want to vote for Allah or Rama (thus equating the BJP's would-be candidate Rajesh Naik to the Lord Ram)," he told the gathering.

His statement has set off a debate in the communally-sensitive coastal Karnataka region, which has, in the recent past also seen some clashes between the two communities.

Speaking on the issue, Rai said such statements don't become an election campaign. Rai said he will take up the issue of BJP using religion as a campaign trick with the Election Commission.

"To me, Ram and Rahim are the same, why bring religion into politics?" he asked.

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| Edited by: Bijaya Das
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