Will not try to dislodge govt, says Kumaraswamy

Karnataka Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy speaks during assembly session at Vidhana Soudha in Bengaluru. (PTI Photo)

Former Karnataka Chief Minister and JD(S) leader H D Kumaraswamy on Sunday said his party would not try and dislodge the ruling BJP government like the saffron party had done to his coalition government and opined that he did not think that mid-term polls would be held.

"The JD(S) will not try to dislodge the government like the saffron party did to unseat the coalition government. Leaders of other parties may hanker after power, but not us. We fill function as an effective opposition party and hope the ruling BJP gives succor to the flood-affected people," he told reporters at Belagavi.

The JD(S) leader said he did not think there would be mid-term polls in Karnataka, as constantly being stated by the leader of the opposition and former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah. This seemed to be more true after the Assembly elections in Maharashtra and Haryana, he said.

His comments drew a sharp reaction from Siddaramaiah, who said the JD(S) leader's remarks that his party would not dislodge the government gave an impression that he would support the saffron party. Siddaramaiah recalled that JD(S) had formed the government with BJP in 2005-06.

"What else can you expect from him? His statement gives that impression (that he supports BJP)," he told reporters in Bengaluru. Siddaramaiah, who had on Saturday said his party was prepared to face the bypolls to 15 assembly constituencies in Karnataka if elections were held as per schedule on December 5, sought to know how BJP would remain in a majority if Congress won all 15 seats.

To this, Kumaraswamy said if the bypoll results led to the collapse of the BJP government, the general elections would be at least six months away. His brand of politics, the JD(S) leader said, was not vengeance based, but to address the sufferings of people.

"How many farmers will die if the Governor's rule is imposed in the state? To avoid this, I only said that I am contemplating whether the government should continue or not. It is immaterial for me who should be the Chief Minister and whose government should continue,"

Kumaraswamy said. Bypolls to 15 of 17 seats represented by disqualified Congress JD(S) MLAs, whose resignation and absence from trust vote led to the fall of the Congress-JD(S) coalition government and made way for the BJP to come to power, will be held on December 5.

The then Speaker K R Ramesh Kumar had disqualified them as MLAs, ruling that those disqualified cease to be MLAs with immediate effect till the expiry of the 15th assembly (in 2023), which they have challenged in the Supreme Court. BJP needs six seats to win a simple majority in the assembly and continue the government.

The BS Yediyurappa led BJP ministry assumed office on July 26, three days after the collapse of the Congress-JD(S) government with the defeat of the confidence motion moved by (then chief minister) Kumaraswamy in the assembly. 

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