Karnataka: Deve Gowda hints at mid-term polls, then takes U-turn
The coalition between JD(S) and Congress in Karnataka will go down in history as perhaps the most flimsy one. Since the two forged a post-poll alliance after 2018 assembly polls, there has been ambiguity on how long will their friendship last. Recently, former Prime Minister and JD(S) Chief HD Deve Gowda spoke at the possibility of mid-term polls, and then took a U-turn.
Look at what Congress is doing, said Gowda
Gowda, whose son HD Kumaraswamy sat on Chief Minister's chair after neither Congress nor JD(S) gained a complete majority, reiterated that the grand old party wanted to form an alliance. "There is no doubt that there will be mid-term polls. They (Congress) said they will support us for five years but look at their behavior now. Our people are smart," he reportedly said.
Gowda said he didn't ask for his son's CM post
"People are carefully watching everything. I didn't ask them for a coalition government. I did not ask for the chief ministerial post for my son Kumaraswamy. They (Congress) called me and asked me to form the government. I will continue my work," 86-year-old Gowda said.
However, Gowda later said the coalition would last
As his statement brought to attention the obvious rift between the parties, Gowda tried to dial back the tensions. "I said it for local body election and not assembly election. I'm here to build my party," he clarified. Gowda maintained the coalition would last for another four years, as Congress and JD(S) have an understanding.
Reportedly, Siddaramaiah wants Rahul to snap ties with JD(S)
Gowda's comments came at a time when some senior Congress leaders appealed to party president Rahul Gandhi to snap ties with JD(S). Apparently, Kumaraswamy's predecessor Siddaramaiah met Rahul to tell him the coalition is causing harm to Congress. Apart from Rahul, he met Karnataka in-charge KC Venugopal and senior leader AK Antony. Separately, MLA HK Patil met Venugopal with the same idea.
Congress and JD(S) suffered humiliating defeat in Lok Sabha polls
Earlier, Kumaraswamy also said he can't express the pain he stays in every day, and that he has the responsibility of running the government smoothly. To note, Congress-JD(S)' lack of clarity helped BJP in general elections as the saffron party scooped 25 out of 28 Lok Sabha seats. The allies settled for one seat each. In fact, Gowda, a former PM, also lost polls.