BENGALURU: Karnataka deputy chief minister G.Parameshwara on Friday said that the Janata Dal (Secular) and Congress will continue its term in office as the unfavourable Lok Sabha results was not a mandate on the state or the H.D.Kumaraswamy-led coalition government.
The statement came a day after the JD(S)-Congress combine tasted one of its worst ever drubbing at the hands of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) that won 25 out of the total 28 seats in the state.
“This election mandate was for the Lok Sabha and the country and not for the state government," Parameshwara said on Friday after the chief minister convened an ‘informal’ cabinet meet to discuss the next course of action for the government.
Kumaraswamy sat beside Parameshwara but did not address the media. His silence speaking volumes about the level of discomfort in having no other choice but to continue working with the party that was partly--if not wholly--responsible for the defeat of his son’s electoral debut from the sugar city of Mandya, about 100 kms from Bengaluru.
Even JD(S) patriarch and former prime minister H.D.Deve Gowda was defeated from Tumakuru.
Kumaraswamy’s son Nikhil was defeated by Sumalatha Amarnath (Sumalatha Ambareesh) after several local Congress leaders decided to back the latter as a way to get back at its arch rival, JD(S). The BJP benefited from the rivalry between the workers of the two parties, who shifted their votes to the saffron outfit and giving them a foothold in south Karnataka.
“Discussed about the results of Lok Sabha elections in informal cabinet meeting today.
My cabinet colleagues have expressed solidarity with me and I am grateful to them as well as all the leaders of our coalition partner #Congress," Kumaraswamy wrote on Twitter later on Friday.
The two parties, who share a turbulent and tempestuous past, had formed an alliance, much to the displeasure of its workers who can barely see eye to eye in most districts of south Karnataka.
The BJP maintains that it will not try to lure coalition legislators as it believes that the government will fall on its own.
The BJP also believes that the coalition government does not have the moral right to continue in office after the Lok Sabha results. But the Kumaraswamy government continues to have the majority, albeit a slender one, in the lower house of the state legislature.
With Friday’s by-poll win in Kundgol, the coalition’s numbers have moved up to 118 while the BJP’s increased by one to 105 after it won the other assembly by-poll of Chincholi.