Former Karnataka DG and IGP Shankar Bidari, who is currently in a self-imposed political exile after brief dalliances with the Congress and Samajwadi Party (SP), is expected to float new political party on Jan 23, which marks the 108th birth anniversary of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose.
Bidari’s associates here told dna that “saheb”, as they address him, is geared up for the launch which was being planned in a “systematic way”. They said Bidari had been disillusioned by the treatment he received by the Congress and the SP, and had decided not to join any party, but go on his own.
Bidari’s choice of Bose’s birthday as the launch date is apparently designed to benefit from the widespread deification of one of the icons of India’s Independence struggle, but it is apparent that he is unaware of a political party, All India Forward Bloc, already claiming the legendary founder of Indian National Army INA) as its own brand.
Bidari had joined Congress on March 18, 2013 and had quit on Aug 12, 2013 following unhappiness over state leadership of the party refusing him party ticket to contest from his home town, Terdal in the assembly elections, in favour of Umashri, who went on to become a minister in the Siddaramaiah government.
Bidari was supposed to contest as Congress candidate from Hubli-Dharwad central constituency, which is strong hold of former chief minister Jagadish Shettar, in Assembly elections held in May 2013. But on the day nominations were to be filed, he joined the SP, only to exit from that party on Oct 12.
For three months, Bidari lay low, and rumours were rife of him joining the BJP. Sources in the BJP approved the rumours and said that state leadership could not agree his demands, that were “too unrealistic, as one source in the party put it. Apparently, he wanted the party ticket for himself from Bagalkot constituency to contest in the Lok Sabha election, and for his supporters from Raichur and Kolar constituencies.
“When BS Yeddyurappa, who was instrumental in strengthening the BJP in the state, did not place any conditions for re-joining, how could we accept Bidari’s conditions?” the BJP sources wanted to know.
It is also reported that Bidari was invited by the Aam Aadmi Party and Bahujan Samaj Party to join them, but turned down the offers.
Bidari confirmed that he would formally declare his new party and would decide on the number of constituencies to be contested by his proposed party in Karnataka in coming Lok Sabha elections.
“There was no other way as the ideologies of seven political parties, that were approached by my supporters in last few months, and my thinking were not in sync.” the former top cop said.
He said his new party, whose name will be declared on Thursday, would be his final fling at politics. “I have decided to float a party to provide third option to Kannadigas, who are fed-up with the Congress and the BJP. As serving commoners is my intention, I will put all efforts to make it as an ideal political outfit till end of my life. I am not under illusion that I can bring about drastic changes in politics and society, but I am optimistic of bringing about at least some change,” he said.
According to his estimates, he has about 35,000 supporters in all districts of the state.