Mysuru, January 12:- With the state Assembly elections tentatively scheduled to be held in May 2018, the scenario in the Mysuru-Mandya region has turned into a battle of canteens.
Eating out in the Mysuru and Mandya districts has all of a sudden has become cheap for the common man as the political parties, politicians, supporters and fans of the politicians have come up with nearly a dozen of canteens, offering breakfast, lunch and dinner at very low cost.
In a camouflaged poll strategy by the political parties and the politicians to woo the voters in the region, about six separate canteens have been functioning in Mysuru and Mandya districts.
The idea of opening the canteens in the state that offers subsidised meals to the economically disadvantaged sections of society was said to be inspired from the scheme ‘Amma Unavagam,’ an initiative of Tamil Nadu government in 2013 which introduced ‘Amma Canteen’ in various cities of that state where the restaurant chain as part of government schemes aimed at offering people to get meals at low cost.
The Karnataka government drawing inspiration from the scheme launched the ‘Indira Canteen’ in the state and initially launched these canteens in Bengaluru City, managed by the BBMP. Within days of the launch of the Indira Canteen in Bengaluru, Namma Appaji Canteen was started in Mahaveera Circle in Mandya offering coffee at Rs 3, breakfast at Rs 5 and lunch at Rs 10.
In addition to this, a fan of actor-turned-politician Ramya launched ‘Kumari Ramya Canteen’ at Ashokanagar in Mandya. Raghu, a fan of Ramya is said to have started this canteen to prepare the ground for her to contest in the elections from the constituency by offering variety of dishes for Rs 10 per plate. Another canteen ‘Janasnehi Mahil Canteen’ in Mandya was also launched and is offering food at subsidised rates, the canteen is said to have started by few women funded by Ravi Kumar Ganiga who is hoping to contest the upcoming Assembly elections from Mandya.
While Mysuru is no less compared to Mandya, a total of 11 Indira Canteens were launched by Chief Minister Siddaramaiah in the city alone on Friday. Two big kitchens have been opened in Mysuru from where the quality meals will be prepared and served at the Indira Canteens to the people.
On January 14, founder of SMP Foundation and BJP leader S M Shiva Prakash is launching SMP Canteen which aims at providing meals to thousands of people at a low cost of Rs 15 per plate on a daily basis.
Though people in the region are conscious that these canteens are set up to woo the voters to cast their precious votes to them and their parties, people are not missing to visit these canteens and taste the food stuff.
Sharing his view with City Today, a student from Mysuru Darpan Ragu said, “It’s good as long as it’s reaching people who are in need of it. But the timing of all these services gives rise to speculations among the people. I don’t think they would cast their votes based on just the food that’s being served.”
Whatever is the reason during the poll season; the canteens have sprung up in the Mysuru- Mandya region offering food for the people at subsidised rates.
-BY KARTHIK K K