What is the controversy around Karnataka's Indira Canteens?
- BJP national general secretary CT Ravi on Saturday demanded renaming of Indira Canteens
- Indira Canteens was started by Siddaramaiah's government in 2017
- Siddaramaiah termed the demand as 'vengeance' politics
Bharatiya Janata Party national general secretary CT Ravi on Saturday demanded renaming of Indira Canteens, causing quite a stir with former Karnataka chief minister Siddaramaiah terming the demand as 'vengeance' politics. Indira Canteens, a programme named after former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, was started by Siddaramaiah's government in 2017 to provide meals to economically disadvantaged sections of the society at a subsidised rate.
On Saturday, CT Ravi called on Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai to rename Indira Canteens across Karnataka as 'Annapoorneshwari Canteens'.
"Request Chief Minister Sri @BSBommai to rename Indira Canteens across Karnataka as "Annapoorneshwari Canteen" at the earliest. Don't see any reason why Kannadigas should be reminded of the dark days of Emergency while they are having food," Ravi said in a tweet.
This triggered a row, with several Congress leaders slamming Ravi for the demand.
"Demanding a change in the name of Indira Canteen is nothing but vengeance politics. There are so many programmes (named) after the leadership of BJP. Did we demand to change those names?" Siddaramaiah said, news agency ANI quoted.
This demand comes a day after the Centre renamed the country’s highest sports award, the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, as Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award after the veteran hockey player.
Referring to the same, Siddaramaiah said, “It is a common practice to name schemes after national leaders. The Union government could have instituted another award in the name of Major Dhyan Chand, not rename. Hasn’t the BJP named schemes after Atal Bihari Vajpayee in the State? There are flyovers named after Deendayal Upadhyaya and Shyamaprasad Mukherjee in the city. Did we rename them when in power? The BJP needs to learn to respect other’s contribution to the nation as well."