Former Karnataka chief minister and JD(S) leader H D Kumaraswamy has said that his party will not topple the BJP government in the state, adding that he will desist from criticising the saffron party.
Speaking at meetings while touring the flood-hit Belagavi region last week, Kumaraswamy also echoed his former alliance partner and Congress leader Siddaramaiah — that there would be no push by the BJP central leadership to hold mid-term polls in Karnataka by April next year on account of the relatively poor performance by the party in the recently-held Maharashtra and Haryana elections.
“Siddaramaiah says the BJP government will collapse soon. I do not wish for the collapse of the government. Given the results in Haryana and Maharashtra, the possibility of mid-term polls in Karnataka has reduced,’’ Kumaraswamy said.
“I have not developed a soft corner for anyone. My soft corner is for the people of the state. I want the government to help the flood-affected people of the state. There is no point in constant criticism and the government must be allowed to do its work,” the former chief minister said, amid allegations from the Congress of the JD(S) “cosying up” to the BJP.
After his comments, Siddaramaiah claimed that Kumaraswamy has revealed his “true colours”. “Kumaraswamy has formed a government with BJP support in the past. It is not surprising to hear his statement about the BJP. His true colours have been revealed,” the Congress leader said.
The JD(S) has 34 MLAs in the 224-member Karnataka Assembly, while the BJP has 106 and the Congress has 77. The state is set to witness bypolls to 15 of the 17 vacant seats on December 5, with the BJP desperate to win at least six seats to retains its majority government.
“The results in Haryana and Maharashtra will have a bearing on Karnataka is my opinion. The BJP has created a government with a lot of effort. In the 100 days it has been in power, people have observed the way the government has functioned. In my opinion, it is not going to be easy for the BJP in the bypolls…,” Kumaraswamy said.
Since coming to power in July, the B S Yediyurappa government has ordered a CBI probe into a case of alleged illegal tapping of telephones of several people in the state, including politicians, their aides and others which occurred during the tenure of the Kumaraswamy-led JD(S)-Congress coalition government.
There is also speculation that the JD(S) leader is soft pedalling the BJP on account of the CBI probe. Many JDS legislators who are aggrieved with the party leadership are also known to be considering joining the BJP at an appropriate time.