Who Killed Tipu Sultan; BJP Whips Up New Controversy Before Karnataka Polls

Bengaluru: Ahead of the assembly polls, Karnataka politics is now embroiled in a fresh controversy over Tipu Sultan. BJP has converted the death of this eighteenth-century ruler into an election issue.

Leaders of Karnataka BJP have started to claim that it was not the British and Maratha army, but two Vokkaliga leaders who killed Tipu Sultan. As per political analysts, this is the BJP’s ploy to garner the support of the politically powerful Vokkaliga community.

Some people in the old Mysuru belt believe in the folklore that Tipu Sultan was killed by the two Vokkaliga chieftains Uri Gowda and Nanje Gowda. There is a book named Tipu Nijakanasugalu (Real Dreams of Tipu) by Addanda Cariappa that promotes this theory.

Most historians refute this claim and maintain that Uri Gowda and Nanje Gowda did not exist and might just be fictional characters.

But Karnata BJP leaders support it. BJP leaders, including Vokkaliga leaders CT Ravi, the party’s national General Secretary, and ministers Ashwath Narayan, Gopalaiah, Union Minister of State Shobha Karandlaje and Ashwath Narayan are among those who claim there is historical evidence about Uri Gowda and Nanje Gowda.

The Vokkaliga community in the past supported the Congress and the HD Kumaraswamy’s Janata Dal Secular. Earlier this week, the state’s Horticulture Minister Munirathna, a film producer-turned-politician, announced a movie on the subject named “Uri Gowda and Nanje Gowda”.

But Nirmalanandanatha Mahaswamiji, the chief pontiff of Sri Adichunchanagiri Mahasamsthana Math, highly respected by the Vokkaligas decreed that information, edicts, and historical records about the alleged killers of Tipu Sultan be gathered and submitted to the mutt. He also asked Munirathna not to go ahead with his film project.

Ahead of the election, several BJP leaders have been making provocative comments about Tipu Sultan targeting the Congress. Karnataka BJP chief Nalin Kateel, appealed to chase away followers of Tipu Sultan.

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