JD(S)-Congress understanding for 2019 Lok sabha polls depends on fair dialogue, says Kumaraswamy

Karnataka Chief Minister says the State is facing challenges that are bigger than the religion tag for Lingayats.

May 24, 2018 09:27 pm | Updated December 01, 2021 06:11 am IST - BENGALURU

Karnataka Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy.

Karnataka Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy.

Karnataka Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy, who is facing the floor test on May 25, says the Janata Dal (Secular)-Congress alliance will survive as long as there is a fair and transparent dialogue between the two parties.

Considering the reported bickering and dissatisfaction within the Congress, especially of D.K. Shivakumar, who played a key role in bringing about the alliance, are you confident of sailing through the floor test without any hiccups?

There is no reason for people to be apprehensive about the floor test. First of all, the coalition of the Congress and the JD(S) has the needed numbers, and legislators of both parties have reposed faith in their leaders. The threat was there till B.S. Yeddyurappa subjected himself to the floor test, knowing full well that the BJP does not have the majority. Legislators of both the parties are standing like a rock behind this newly formed coalition. The test will be just a ritual. I will make use of this opportunity to respond to every allegation levelled against me by Mr. Yeddyurappa.

People are apprehensive about the longevity of this coalition as the vote base of the JD(S) and the Congress is the same, especially in the Old Mysore region. What will be the mode of understanding for the coming Lok Sabha elections?

It is natural for the people to be apprehensive because of the prevailing circumstances. However, this much is certain — an understanding between the Congress and the JD(S) for the 2019 Lok Sabha polls hinges on a fair and transparent dialogue between leaders of both parties. As far as I am concerned, I am open-minded and I know that the entire country is watching Karnataka and every move of mine. Participation of leaders of both national and regional parties in the swearing-in ceremony has increased my responsibility. The coordination committee comprising leaders of both the parties will help in taking the coalition structure forward in the next five years.


The question in particular is about the clash of interest in the Old Mysore region, especially in Bengaluru Rural, Mandya and Mysuru, because of the presence of Mr. Shivakumar and the former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah with whom you had serious differences.

I would like to clarify one thing. It is time to move forward, instead of sulking and thinking of the past. Both Mr. Shivakumar and I have matured as politicians and are capable of understanding situations on the ground. You might have observed that both of us joined hands and resolved to sink our differences. Similar is my response to other leaders of the Congress, including Mr. Siddaramaiah. But I would like to reiterate that all depends on the relation between the two parties in the next one year.

Will the Congress offering a separate religion tag for the Lingayat community have any bearing on the coalition?

The State is facing challenges that are bigger than the issue of religion tag for Lingayat. However, considering the concern of the leaders of the movement, we will invite them and talk to them once everything falls into place.

You have described yourself a “child of circumstances”. Does that mean you repent accepting to head the coalition?

No. In fact, I accepted the offer as I wanted to realise my dream of helping people in my own way. I could not do much in my 20-month tenure earlier. Now, it is an opportunity to work for the people and various sections of society which have reposed faith in me.

Top News Today

Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.