JD(S) is not father-son party, says Deve Gowda

JD(S) is not father-son party, says Deve Gowda

In picture: JDS supremo and former PM H D Deve Gowda (R) in conversation with his son H D Kumaraswamy (L). DH Photo.

Defending himself and his party ahead of the Assembly elections in Karnataka, former prime minister H D Deve Gowda on Monday said that his party does not engage in nepotism.

Speaking to ANI, the JD(S) supremo defended his party and highlighted the experience and merit of the candidates fielded by his outfit.

“There are four former ministers who belong to backward class, and five-time ministers are all in the field,” said Deve Gowda on the allegation that the JD(S) is a father-son party.

Gowda's statement came after Chief Minister Siddaramaiah said last week that the former prime minister is not looking beyond his sons to lead the JD(S). 

“Deve Gowda has been saying that his last wish is to see his son as chief minister again. Are there no leaders in the party?” Siddaramaiah had asked. 

On Tuesday, Gowda decided to return the favour by continuing to hit out at Siddaramaiah, and he also slammed the previous BJP government.

“Karnataka suffered badly under BJP rule, they had three CMs in five years.This is BJP's contribution. In five years of Congress rule, though there was only one CM, look what has happened to Lokayukta or the public service commission or even the corporation? I also have to take the blame as I supported the Congress (in the corporation). Just to protect my secular credentials, I agreed to support them. The BJP was at my doors but I said no. But, hereafter, about supporting (the Congress), what is our position?” Gowda asked.

The eighty-four-year-old also emphasised on his secular credentials by reminding of his decision as chief minister to implement reservations in the police force.

“From day one, I have stood for secularism, not for emotional politics. When I became CM, I asked DG Ramalingam how many Muslim constables are there in the police department? He said 0.01%. So it was humanity which made me give reservations,” said Gowda.

Karnataka goes to polls on May 12 and counting will be held on May 15. 

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