The BJP is trying its best to change the perceived perception of its preference to the upper caste communities, by getting up close and personal with the Dalit community. 

For the last fortnight, BJP state president B S Yeddyurappa has been seen consuming meals at Dalit homes, which the opposition has slammed as a ploy to appease the oppressed classes in the State. This exercise had however backfired right at the word go, after Yeddyurappa was seen eating food brought from outside, embarrassing both himself and the party.

The briefly shaken up Yeddyurappa however did not repeat the same mistake in the other Dalit homes that he’s been visiting. Convinced that the strategy would yield results, the party’s Central leadership has directed party leaders to up the ante. 

Early Tuesday morning saw Union Power Minister Piyush Goyal following the party’s diktat. Goyal paid a visit to a Dalit’s home in Ambedkar Colony in Hongasandra, Bommanahalli, where he consumed breakfast cooked by the lady of the house. After partaking lemon rice and chapathi with aloo sabji, the BJP leader gushed about the food and the hospitality.

“This is the best food I have eaten in my life. If I had not visited this colony, I would have missed out on a memorable experience. This is one of the best moments of my life - It felt like I have visited the house of my own siblings,” he said.

Justifying that the visit was not political gimmick, Goyal said that he had followed the advice of party’s national president Amit Shah. According to Bommanahalli MLA Sathish Reddy, Goyal visited the house of the  deceased party worker Maganagiriyappa, after inaugurating two “hi-tech” toilets on Begur Road. Reddy said that Goyal also visited the homes of two other Dalits - Shankarappa and Somashekar, for coffee. 

“There is strict instructions from the Central leadership that all leaders should visit as many Dalit colonies in the State and spend quality time with the community members,” added Reddy.