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Congress-JD(S) Will Fight 2019 Elections Together, Says Kumaraswamy, Predicts Major Political Change

Kumaraswamy also expressed confidence that the coalition government formed by the two parties will last the full five years in Karnataka.

Deepa Balakrishnan | CNN-News18deepab18

Updated:May 24, 2018, 8:06 AM IST
Bengaluru: New Karnataka chief minister HD Kumaraswamy said on Wednesday that the JD(S) will fight the 2019 Lok Sabha election with the Congress and expressed confidence that the coalition government formed by the two parties will last the full five years in Karnataka.

Fresh off his swearing-in ceremony that looked more like a joint opposition meet for the next general election, Kumaraswamy predicted that there will be a major political change in the country in 2019.

The 58-year-old Vokkaliga leader took oath as the 23rd chief minister of Karnataka on Wednesday at a grand ceremony attended by a galaxy of top leaders and regional satraps in a rare public show of unity perceived as a possible harbinger of a broad-based anti-BJP alliance ahead of the Lok Sabha polls next year.

“This government will be more stable than you realise. This is for the first time that so many national-level leaders are coming together on one stage for an oath-taking ceremony," he said.

He also showered praise on his deputy, Congress’ Dalit face G Parameshwara, who also took oath on Wednesday. “There is no one more adjustable than Parameshwara. I can guarantee you that any difference of opinion will be solved within minutes," he said.

This is a major shift in tone from the JD(S) leader, who had in the run-up to the oath taking ceremony predicted that running the coalition government will not be easy. Parameshwara, too, had said that there are tough times ahead.

The CM said that delicate balance will be required to run the government smoothly. "The Congress has their ideas and I have mine. We will work towards both of them. You will come to know of it all when my government presents a new budget,” he said.

He also promised that he will fulfil his campaign vow of full farm loan waiver. “I already have a blueprint on how to waive farmer loans. Let's now keep the politics aside and work towards the state's development,” he said.

On minority religion status for Lingayat, Kumaraswamy told CNN-News18 that it was not a priority for him and he wants to develop the state together. “We want justice, food, shelter and peace for all. That is this government's aim," he added.

He also said weighed in on the Cauvery water sharing issue and said that his government would review the Centre’s draft proposal in the Supreme Court.

| Edited by: Aakarshuk Sarna
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