'Gowda, HDK responsible for BJP's growth in state'

It was in 2005 that Gowda expelled Siddaramaiah, then JD(S) deputy chief minister who was beginning to emerge as a leader of the Ahinda (minorities, backward classes and Dalits). (DH File Photo)

The Congress-JD(S) coalition lasted just 14 months, but the rivalry between H D Deve Gowda and Siddaramaiah goes back to 14 years. 

It was in 2005 that Gowda expelled Siddaramaiah, then JD(S) deputy chief minister who was beginning to emerge as a leader of the Ahinda (minorities, backward classes and Dalits). 

“Gowda doesn’t allow anyone to flourish, except his own children and family,” Siddaramaiah said. “He doesn’t allow people from his own caste (Vokkaliga) to grow. What happened to Byre Gowda, Nagegowda, Chandregowda, Govinde Gowda, Jeevaraj Alva,” he asked, suggesting Gowda shunted them out.

Raking up the past, Siddaramaiah pointed out that the JD(S) patriarch had prevented his elevation as chief minister in 1996.

The same happened in 2004, he recounted. “Gowda has also claimed that he requested S M Krishna not be made the chief minister for my sake. It’s a big lie. Sharad Pawar is still alive. There was a meeting in his house where he suggested that we ask for the CM’s post and that Sonia Gandhi had agreed. But in my presence, Gowda refused. I later asked Gowda why he refused the CM’s post to which he said they would have to defend Krishna against whom they had prepared a charge sheet. So, we settled for the deputy CM’s post,” he recalled. 

The Congress leader went a step further to say that the BJP came to power in the state because of Gowda and Kumaraswamy. “They are responsible for the BJP to grow in Karnataka,” he said. “But it would not have happened if they hadn’t withdrawn support to the Dharam Singh government overnight to join hands with the BJP. And if the JD(S) hadn’t broken their promise, Yediyurappa would’ve been CM for 20 months and gone. Instead, the BJP won 110 seats because of Gowda and Kumaraswamy,” he charged. 

 

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