Will win in all 15 segments, claims BJP

Minister and BJP leader C T Ravi. File Photo

The ruling BJP on Thursday alleged that the Congress and JD(S) were "daydreaming" about forming a "union of opportunists" again in Karnataka after December 5 bypoll results, and asserted that the party candidates will win in all the 15 segments.

The message of "strong and stable" BJP government against the "kichadi government" of the Congress and JD(S) will be taken to voters during campaigning, the party said. It put its weight behind disqualified legislators adding to speculation that they will be made ministers, irrespective of whether they win or lose the bypolls. "Congress and JD(S) that ran a coalition government in the state for about 15 months which saw both parties daily indulging in allegations and counter-allegations, accusations of nepotism, remote control..they have now started daydreaming once again," minister and BJP leader C T Ravi said.

Speaking to reporters here, he said: "They are daydreaming about forming a union of opportunists after bypoll results..they are dreaming about the beginning of another innings..."

The comments from the BJP came a day after JD(S) patriarch H D Deve Gowda, in a cryptic remark made in the context of the bypolls, said on Wednesday that Congress president Sonia Gandhi's decision after the election results on December 9 should be watched out for.

Gowda's son and former Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy too had said there would be a stable government in the state after the bypolls, but not necessarily that of BJP.

Kumaraswamy and Congress leader Siddaramaiah's recent statements that their parties' main objective was to defeat defectors, who are now BJP candidates, had led to speculation about the possible coming together of the former alliance partners if the situation arose.

The Congress and JD(S), who had run a coalition government for 14 months and contested Lok Sabha polls in an alliance, have parted ways ever since the collapse of the Kumaraswamy ministry in July, following the rebellion by 17 MLAs, and are contesting the bypolls independently.

Ravi expressed confidence that people in the bypolls will vote for BJP in all the constituencies as they want stability, and reiterated support to disqualified MLAs whom the party has fielded in 13 constituencies.

"It is because of their resignations or coming out of coalition government, we (BJP) have been able to come to power...people will vote for BJP in all 15 constituencies as they don't want to see political circus once again in the state," he said.

"BJP has 105 seats, if we get 15 seats more it will be 120 seats, enough to provide a stable government... than the kichadi government (of Cong-JDS), stable government was good for the people, we are taking this message to people and they too understand it," he added.

The ruling BJP needs to win at least six seats in the bypolls to remain in a majority in the 224-member assembly, which would still have two vacant seats-- Maski and R R Nagar.

Among the segments going to the bypolls, 12 were held by the Congress and three by JD(S), whose coalition government collapsed due to rebellion by the disqualified MLAs.

Responding to speculation about BJP promising minister posts to disqualified legislators, even if they lose in the bypolls, Ravi said: "it is not the right question to answer now, but I can only say that this government has come into existence because of them, we have publicly accepted it."

According to BJP sources, there are talks within party circles that majority of disqualified legislators will be made ministers after the results, and in case any of them lose in the bypolls, the member of legislative council (MLC) route will be considered to induct them into the cabinet, which has 17 vacancies.

Some sitting party MLCs may be asked to make way for disqualified MLAs, by stepping down, if the situation arises, sources added.

With winning a majority of seats being crucial for the government's survival, the BJP has fielded 13 of the 16 disqualified legislators who joined the party as its candidates from their respective constituencies.

Though the BJP is claiming that it will win in all 15 constituencies, party sources term Hunsur, K R Pete, Yeshwanthpur, Hoskote as "difficult" constituencies.

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