Bengaluru, May 18, 2019: While the JD(S) celebrated its patriarch HD Deve Gowda’s 86th birthday on Saturday, the regional party’s senior leader Basavaraj Horatti stirred the political cauldron by calling for the dissolution of the Karnataka’s assembly and face an election.
It was exactly last year the JD(S) joined hands with the Congress to form the government following a fractured mandate in the Assembly polls. The Congress extended its support to make Deve Gowda’s son HD Kumaraswamy the chief minister.
“On one hand, we keep hearing that the BJP is plotting to topple the government. On the other hand, you have Congress leaders saying Siddaramaiah should be the chief minister. It’s better to dissolve the Assembly and go for election. To my mind, that’s the only way to put an end to this confusion,” Horatti told news channels, adding that this was his “personal” opinion.
Horatti also targeted Congress in a measured manner. “Kumaraswamy has been the CM for the last one year and has done good work. At least, Kumaraswamy should be given his space to work as part of the coalition dharma,” he said.
This is the latest turbulence to hit the Congress-JD(S) coalition in Karnataka ahead of the Lok Sabha election result on May 23. It is widely believed that the result could have a bearing on the longevity of the Kumaraswamy-led government.
Close of the heels of Horatti’s remarks, Kumaraswamy took to Twitter to dissuade leaders from courting controversy ahead of the Lok Sabha election result.
“We are on the verge of formation of a new government at the Centre. At this juncture where all efforts are being made to form non-BJP government at the Centre, the contradictory statements by leaders of coalition partners Congress-JDS may mar such efforts,” Kumaraswamy wrote. “Hence my humble request to the leaders of both the parties to restrain from making contradictory-controversial statements in public and to support the cause.”
Horatti has been vocal in the past as well. In December 2018, Horatti launched a scathing attack on the coalition saying Kumaraswamy had become “the Congress’ rubber stamp.”
Of late, the JD(S) leadership, including Kumaraswamy, was miffed with Congress leaders publicly seeking a second term for Siddaramaiah as chief minister.