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CNN IBN on Belgaum Elections

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Source: IBN Live
The Mumbai-Karnataka region that’s seen fierce border dispute for the last 50 years, votes in the third phase of polls on Thursday.
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It’s been the war cry of the Maharashtra Ekikaran Samiti (MES) in Belgaum for five decades – MES candidates like Manohar Kinekar have been winning local body and Assembly elections on just one issue that they’ll fight to make Belgaum a part of Maharashtra.
MES candidate Manohar Kinekar said, “When the border issue is solved all other problems are solved too because we’ll participate better in governance and we can solve the problem in better way.”
But this time the MES has to contend with its own rebels in 3 of 5 Assembly seats. After being denied tickets, leaders like Shivaji Sunthkar, have decided to stand independently.
Sunthkar said, “People are out on the streets saying their favourite candidate has been sidelined by the party and so they want me to fight as an independent.”

Its this in-fighting in MES that Congress and BJP are banking on. They are seeking votes on the development plank.
And 50 years after re-organisation of States, that’s the election issue for the aam aadmi too.
The language issue is certainly an emotional one, but you can’t live on it. Be it the Marathi manus or the Kannada manava, the basics of roti, kapda and makaan are more important.
And that’s could well help parties other than the MES in gaining ground.

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