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HDK's Indifference, Parameshwara's Interference and Rahul Gandhi's Resignation Force MLAs to Jump Ship to BJP

The inaccessibility of HD Kumaraswamy, a faction-ridden state Congress that is looking more vulnerable after the resignation of Rahul Gandhi and personal interests of MLAs are said to be the main reasons behind the current crisis.

D P Satish | News18dp_satish

Updated:July 8, 2019, 4:16 PM IST
HDK's Indifference, Parameshwara's Interference and Rahul Gandhi's Resignation Force MLAs to Jump Ship to BJP
Illustration by Mir Suhail/ News18.com

Bengaluru: The latest crisis to hit the one-year-old Congress-JD(S) government in Karnataka has got more to do with internal differences and coalition contradictions than the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in waiting to oust the government.

The inaccessibility and indifferent attitude of Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy, a faction-ridden state Congress that is increasingly looking more and more vulnerable after the resignation of AICC president Rahul Gandhi and personal interests of MLAs are said to be the main reasons for the latest and till date, the most powerful assault on the shaky government.

When Kumaraswamy was in America on a personal visit, Gandhi made it clear that he would not stay on as the Congress chief. This prompted even some senior-most Congress MLAs to revolt against the state leadership, which they called a total failure. The JD(S) MLAs have blamed HDK’s indifferent attitude for their revolt.

Unlike his previous regime during 2006-07, HDK is highly unpopular among both JD(S) and Congress MLAs. He is no longer popular even among his party workers and the public.

Deputy chief minister Dr G Parameshwara of the Congress neither has the stature, nor the backing of the party MLAs. The four MLAs from Bengaluru directly blame him for their decision to quit. Seven-time MLA and a former senior minister, B Ramalinga Reddy, has agreed to withdraw his resignation if Parameshwara was removed as Bengaluru development minister.

Speaking to News18, Reddy said: “The Bengaluru development portfolio should be handled by a city MLA. Parameshwara is an outsider. He is not taking us into confidence and we have quit because of that.”

The JD(S) is now a divided house, with many leaders upset over the highhandedness of the Gowda family.

Rebel leader H Vishwanath, who has quit as JD(S) state chief to lead the rebels, told News18 over telephone from Mumbai that even after a near-total decimation of the party in the recent Lok Sabha elections, the family did not seem to have realised that public sentiment was against family rule. He blamed HDK's inaccessibility and personal egos for the current crisis.

Many JD(S) and Congress MLAs who spoke to News18 endorsed his views.

“Kumaraswamy is not the same person anymore. He has surrounded himself with useless people. He is not interested in interacting with the MLAs and resolving the issues. Our image has taken a beating because of him,” they said.

Former chief minister and coalition coordination committee chairman Siddaramaiah, who commands the support of half of Congress MLAs, seems to have thrown up his hands.

After the Lok Sabha debacle, he apparently asked Gandhi to sever ties with the Gowdas to save the Congress in the state as he blamed JD(S) for the rout of Congress in the old Mysore region. Even though Siddaramaiah is now trying to save the coalition, his close aides maintain that he is not interested in continuing the relationship with the JD(S).

An angry former prime minister HD Deve Gowda is now blaming Siddaramaiah for the current crisis after some Congress MLAs demanded that he be made the next chief minister.

The BJP, which has so far made at least six unsuccessful attempts on the government in the last one year, is upbeat. It feels that this time, they will hit the target without fail. BJP state chief and former chief minister BS Yeddyurappa is closely watching the developments, hoping that he will be made the CM once again.

If the government falls, HDK and some Congress leaders have to take more blame than the BJP for allowing the collapse.

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