I hail from Bommasandra village in Anekal taluk. Coming from a farming family, I went to a Kannada-medium school. Despite having studied software engineering, my interest in Kannada literature never left me. After all, it was Kuvempu, Karanth and Lankesh of Lankesh Patrike who had moulded me intellectually. This rootedness never left me even when I was living in the US.
I went to US in 2000 as I got a software job. By 2003, I had some recognition as a Kannada writer, despite living in the Bay Area of California.
In 2010, I came back with the intent of engaging seriously with Karnataka’s social and political structure. Once we started out, we filed a case against BJP leader BS Yeddyurappa on the land denotification issue. We also started a publication called Vikrant Karnataka.
I have already contested the Bengaluru local body polls. I thought AAP was the best alternative platform for the people who are sick of communal and caste-based politics.
In a state where caste equations almost solely decide the election results, we believe in setting a precedent. Everyone in the Congress, the BJP and the JD(S) is communal, casteist and corrupt. However, if you look closely at the 2012 Assembly results, Vokkaligas did not support the JD(S) as expected and Lingayats did not support Yeddyurappa, whose KJP won just six seats.
It means the people are not as casteist as political parties would have us believe. Unlike other political parties, we neither have money power nor AC vans. We are dependent on donations. Of course, it gets tiring. But I’m prepared for it — don’t forget that I come from a village!
Farmers face several problems in my constituency. Groundwater issues, value addition to silk farming and minimum support price for farmers are the key issues that I’m focussing on. Of course, the national political trend is against corruption and that can be seen here too. AAP is going to be a massive force to be reckoned with.
As told to G Vishnu