An ex-police officer of Karnataka, Anupama Shenoy, decided it was time for her to enter politics. She said that it was time to police the politicians who make promises and fail to fulfill them. In an interview to Indo-Asian News Service in Bengaluru, Shenoy said, “I have entered politics, floated a party to contest in the May 12 state assembly elections and become a lawmaker to police politicians so that they fulfil their promises and fear any wrongdoing.”

The 37-year-old former police officer is from the 2010 batch of the Karnataka State Police Cadre. She resigned as Kudligi Deputy Superintendent of Police (DySP) in Ballari district in 2016. As per reports the officer had a heated argument with a state cabinet minister and a local liquor baron which lead to her resignation from the police service. It was during this difficult time that the idea of joining politics occurred to her. She decided if she wanted to serve the people to her satisfaction then it was important to venture into politics.

“I am in politics to create a new leadership in the state, as the youth in the three main parties have no space to become leaders unless they are wealthy to contest elections,” said Shenoy. In 2017 Shenoy floated her party the Bharatiya Janashakti Congress (BJC), but it was only in 2018 that she registered it with the Election Commission (EC). She was allotted the ‘lady’s finger’ (bhindi) symbol the same year to enable her to contest the assembly polls and the Lok Sabha elections in 2019. The former police officer shared that her party would contest in about 30 constituencies. She herself would most probably contest from the Udupi district.

“I want to make my party a platform for the youth and anyone committed to changing the political system and serving the people better. Their economic and social backgrounds do not matter,” Shenoy affirmed. “As I was in the police department for four years after joining government service in 2012, I am teaching my party members how to police politicians for the good of the people and the state,” Shenoy averred.

Yes, it’s true that it’s too soon to expect Shenoy to come to power, a fact that even she believes in, but it is her belief that she should be a part of the political system anyway. Her presence as a politician she thinks will ensure better governance, clean administration and efficient delivery of services to the people across Karnataka. “We have not formed the party only to contest in the assembly elections, but to sow the seeds for its growth in the years to come. We will support any party that secures majority to form the next government in the state,” hinted Shenoy.

What can be read as good news is that only candidates with no criminal background or police cases against them can contest on a BJC ticket. Along with this requirement it is essential for the candidate to know how to read and write Kannada—the native language.

“As I was in the police department for four years after joining government service in 2012, I am teaching my party members how to police politicians for the good of the people and the state,” Shenoy shared.

“In the long run, we want to support candidates who are poor by sponsoring their election expense. We are managing so far with whatever money we have from our sources,” said Shenoy. “We also want to check the rampant commercialisation of the education and health sectors in the country so that better facilities can be provided to the needy. As people are our kingmakers, we have to protect them at any cost,” she said during her interview.

“I think corruption was high during the BJP rule (2008-2013), under the leadership of its chief minister B.S. Yeddyurappa, when his government looted the rich mining district (Ballari) with mining baron G. Janardhan Reddy as a cabinet minister. He made politicians believe they will not be questioned,” lamented Shenoy.

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