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04 Jun 2020, Edition - 1787, Thursday

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Mid-term polls will be held in Karnataka, says Deve Gowda, slams coalition partner Congress


Janata Dal (Secular) leader HD Deve Gowda on Friday claimed that mid-term polls will be held in Karnataka.

“They [Congress] said they will support us for five years, but their behaviour hasn’t been in line with this promise. Our people are smart. They are watching them [Congress],” Deve Gowda said.

The former Prime Minister’s comments came amid simmering differences between the Janata Dal (Secular)-Congress coalition in Karnataka.

Speaking on the Congress’s debacle in the Lok Sabha elections, former Prime Minister Deve Gowda said it seemed that the party has lost its strength.

“But there will be no danger from my side. I don’t know how long this [Karnataka] government will last. It is in the hands of the Congress and not Kumarswamy,” Deve Gowda said, and added that the JDS has accepeted all “arbitrary demands” of the Congress.

Did not want son to be Karnataka CM: Deve Gowda

Deve Gowda also made a stunning claim when he said he did not want his son HD Kumaraswamy to be the chief minister of Karnataka.

Deve Gowda also claimed that the coalition in Karnataka was formed due to pressure by the Congress.

“I was the glue for the coalition in Karnataka. Sonia and Rahul Gandhi sent Ghulam Nabi Azad and Ashok Gehlot to Bangalore. While having a discussion, I told them the pain of the coalition I had experienced before. I told them I don’t need it [coalition],” said Deve Gowda.

Deve Gowda also revealed that he had suggested Mallikarjun Kharge’s name for the post of the chief minister. He said he had asked Rahul Gandhi to make Mallikarjun Kharge the chief minister. Ghulam Nabi Azad, however, later told Deve Gowda the Congress top boss wanted HD Kumaraswamy to be the chief minister, a demand HD Deve Gowda had to agree with.

The remarks have come amid coalition crisis in Karnataka.

Months after the assembly elections, Kumaraswamy had broken down at an event organised to felicitate him. “The chief minister’s post is not a bed of roses, it’s a bed of thorns,” he had said while talking about the coalition.

Soon, the allies and the BJP accused each other of poaching MLAs from their rival camps. However, Congress and JDS decided to stick to each other to stop BJP.

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