Vishwanath wants to step down as state JD(S) president

H Vishwanath

Even as the Congress continues to grapplewith problems of discontentment and dissidence, trouble seems to be brewing in the JD(S) camp, putting the coalition partners in a tight spot a few months ahead of the crucial Lok Sabha elections.

Upset over being sidelined and ignored by his party leadership, JD(S) state president H Vishwanath is said to have decided to step down from the position, which he has been holding for less than five months.

Amidst growing rumours that the Kuruba leader was distancing himself from the party activities, a section of television channels quoted him saying that he would request party supremo H D Deve Gowda to relieve him from his duties.

Citing health reasons, Vishwanath is heard saying that it was becoming increasingly difficult for him travel across the state, and with the Lok Sabha elections around the corner and it was best for the party to replace him. He also said that he had a big responsibility towards the people of Hunsur, who have elected him and that he was finding it difficult to handle both responsibilities.

“Even before I was made the president I had told Deve Gowda to reconsider the decision. I am not in good health. I have had a hip replacement - I have spent one and a half years in Coimbatore hospital. I will yet again ask Deve Gowda to give this responsibility to somebody else,” Vishwanath is heard stating.

It is however learnt that Vishwanath has decided to take the drastic step as both Gowda and Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy had not taken him into confidence during several decision making processes.

While Vishwanath was not available for comment, many JD(S) leaders that DH spoke to conceded that the former was nursing a major grouse against the father-son duo.

According to them, Vishwanath was not consulted during candidate selections for MLC polls, elections to the posts of Legislative Council Chairman and Deputy Chairman and during the cabinet expansion.

Vishwanath, a former Congressman, joined the JD(S) only July 4, and replaced Kumaraswamy as the party president on August 5.

When confronted by the New Delhi media, Kumaraswamy said that he was not aware why Vishwanath had made such a comment. “I don’t know in what context he said he will resign. I will speak to him. If he feels neglected, then I am ready to give him a bigger responsibility. He has been given sufficient freedom to run the party affairs. There are no differences between him and I or any other party leader,” added Kumaraswamy.

The party however chose to clarify after Kumaraswamy’s remarks. In a statement, JD(S) spokesperson Ramesh Babu said that Vishwanath had no intention to resign as the party president.

“The news that has appeared in media is not correct. In his capacity as president, he has called for a party state office bearers meeting on January 3,” he
added.

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Vishwanath wants to step down as state JD(S) president

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