No party can steal votes that belong to JD(S): Nikhil Kumaraswamy – Deccan Herald

Actor-politician Nikhil Kumaraswamy, son of former JD(S) chief minister H D Kumaraswamy, will make his Assembly electoral debut from Ramanagara, after losing his maiden contest from the Mandya Lok Sabha seat in 2019. The Yuva Janata Dal president tells DHs Rashmi Belur about his future and that of his party. Excerpts:
Why did you decide to contest from Ramanagara?
I want to make it clear that it was not my decision to contest from Ramanagara. Actually, I’ve taken personal responsibility of 40 constituencies for the 2023 election and I want to provide strong support to my father, who is touring alone. But then, I wasn’t in a position to say no to party workers and leaders from Ramanagara, who pressured me to contest. It is as per their wish. Now, I’m working hard to bring JD(S) to power.
Why should Ramanagara vote for Nikhil?
Ramanagara has developed extensively since 1994, when my grandfather H D Deve Gowda contested from this constituency. Since then, there’s no dearth of development. Even now, I request people of Ramanagara to vote for me for development and employment. I have a dream to set up more industries, especially for women and youth, here. There shouldn’t be a single unemployed youth in Ramanagara. Lastly, I want to be the ‘Mane Maga,’ as their representative, who’ll be available 24×7.
This election is do-or-die for JD(S). Do you agree?
That a leader from a national party targeted JD(S) during his speech in Mandya shows the strength of our party. The 2023 election will be the answer, a new chapter and a new beginning. Not just Nikhil, but Prajwal Revanna, Suraj Revanna and all youngsters in the party will strengthen JD(S) in the coming days.
How do you respond to Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s attack on JD(S), especially on parivarvaad (dynasty politics) and on being the ATM of one family?
Both national parties have no morality to blame JD(S). Family politics is there in BJP and Congress too. If one wants to talk about it, who is Tejasvi Surya? What about B S Yediyurappa’s sons? We all go before people, seeking votes. If they decide to elect us, no one can stop it. I believe in people.
There is much talk about Vokkaliga votes in the old Mysuru region. Both BJP and Congress are trying to woo them.
No party can steal votes that belong to JD(S). We want to take people of all communities together. Not just in old Mysuru region, people across the state trust H D Kumaraswamy and they will give him a chance this time.
‘Adjustment politics’ is being discussed now. Do you agree there’s adjustment politics in old Mysuru region?
Adjustment politics belongs to BJP and Congress. They joined hands during the Mandya Lok Sabha and MLC elections. They’re the ones doing it. We’re not worried as we have confidence in the people of Karnataka.
Who is your political guru?
My Thata (grandfather) H D Deve Gowda is my inspiration always. Although my father and mother are politicians, we never discuss politics at home. On the ground, people teach us politics. 
Whatever works in films won’t work in politics, it is said. 
The 2019 Mandya Lok Sabha election was just not my failure. I never spoke against my opponent. The entire election was conducted in cinema style. Even then, I wasn’t ready to contest, but there was pressure to do so. It’s also true that internal enemies played their role.
Will your entry into politics end your film career?
No way! Two of my films are ready and I’ll talk about them after election. Cinema is my profession and I’ve proved that I can achieve something outside politics. But I have politics in my blood. I’ve taken a break from cinema.
What is the difference between politics and cinema?
Politics and cinema are completely different worlds, like sun and moon. A filmstar will not be available to people. But a politician will have to be with people.
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