Talk: The former Minister and president of Hyderabad-Karnataka Horata Samit0i Vaijnath Patil speaking in Belgaum on Monday.
The seminar brought representatives of various social, political and farmers' organisations on a common platform to re-assess problems coming in the way of their progress and to explore opportunities to bring them on a par with other developed regions of the State. It aimed to draw the attention of the Government to the special focus necessary to address issues of regional imbalance affecting backwards areas like Mumbai-Karnataka and Hyderabad-Karnataka.
Prominent among those who addressed the gathering included the former Minister and president of the Hyderabad-Karnataka Horata Samithi Vaijnath Patil, Congress leader S.B. Sidnal, the former MP S.C. Malgi, the former MLA L.B. Karale and JD(S) leaders Arvind Dalvai and Syed Mansoor. Vice-president JD(S) farmers' wing Kalyanrao Muchalambi and Belgaum district vice-president of the JD(U) Vasant Kulkarni were instrumental in organising the seminar.
The speakers observed that both regions had been victims of neglect and discrimination by successive governments. Political power, which remained in the hands of those belonging to the southern parts of the State, did not do justice to these regions, they alleged. Even those elected representatives from north Karnataka did not contribute to development, they charged. Thus, the regions remained relatively backward in education, agriculture, irrigation, industry and communication.
The need of the hour was to bring together leaders and people of the two regions and expedite the process of development, they said.
Later, speaking to presspersons, Mr. Patil sought to clarify that the demand for amending Article 371 of the Constitution was not only for the benefit of the HK region, but it could also be extended to other backward districts in the NK region and boundary areas of south Karnataka. The objective behind the demand was to address issues of regional imbalance, he said.
About 60 to 70 per cent of admissions in medical, engineering and technical institutions were from Bangalore and Mysore regions. An equal proportion from these regions served in government services, as per the M.D. Nanjundappa Report on Redressal of Regional Imbalances. Admissions and appointments must be localised to address this issue.
Mr. Muchalambi added that appointments to the posts of vice-chancellors at the universities in north Karnataka regions should be made from among academicians of the region.