In 2011 the Bharatiya Janata Party’s B.S. Yeddyurappa chose an ‘auspicious day’ to step down as Karnataka chief minister following corruption charges.
Now, he is unlikely to consider such ‘superstitions’ if he gets another crack at the top post.
Although the month of Ashada, beginning 3 July, is considered inauspicious, “There is no superstition when it comes to power," said one person closely associated with the BJP president.
With over 14 resignations in just over a week, the H.D. Kumaraswamy-led government—a coalition between the Congress and Janata Dal (Secular)—is facing an existential threat. Many commentators have put it down to political mismanagement and discontent in the ruling coalition along with horse-trading.
But hold those good luck charms—there appears to be a perfectly (ill) logical superstitious explanation to the events in Karnataka.
Apparently, senior JD(S) minister H.D. Revanna believes the current political crisis is the outcome of Kumaraswamy being in the US on 2 July, during the solar eclipse. Never mind the fact that the eclipse took place over South America—Revanna, who wears a cardamom necklace to ward off bad omen, is firm in his belief.
Revanna travelled over 200 kms one way every day to his hometown of Hassan on the advice of his astrologer as the newly inducted minister’s house in Bengaluru was not yet vastu compliant.
After all, Kumaraswamy’s father, former prime minister and JD(S) chief H.D. Deve Gowda along with the entire Gowda household visited Tirupati on the eve of the lunar eclipse in July 2018, about a month after forming the government in Karnataka.
Not everyone is superstitious.
In 2013, former chief minister Siddaramaiah, an agnostic, visited Chamarajanagar, a backward district of south Karnataka avoided by most chief ministers because they believe a visit leads to loss of power.
But during Siddaramaiah’s tenure, too, this reporter was stopped from entering the assembly because there was a lemon in the bag. The police official took away the lemon, but returned it on exit. “We would consult Revanna’s astrologer himself and find a way around Ashada," said a BJP legislator, smelling power.