Tumakuru, Karnataka, Apr 12 : Karnataka Deputy Chief Minister G Parameshwara said that Congress and Janata Dal (Secular), the Coalition partners in the State Government, have joined hands to fight the Lok Sabha election unitedly and both the party leaders and workers have decided to forget their differences to ensure victory of former Prime Minister and JDS Supremo H D Devegowda from Tumakuru which goes to polls on April 18.
His comments comes in the wake of stiff resistance by Congress leaders and reluctance among the party cadre, after Congress-JD(S) coalition partners entered pre-poll alliance in Karnataka and JD(S) was allocated eight out of 28 Lok Sabha seats that included Tumakuru where Congress has its sitting MP Muddahanume Gowda. The two parties had been arch rivals in previous elections.
Speaking to UNI after a election meeting at Kolala village in the district on Thursday, Dr Parameshwara said the two party cadres have come together to defeat BJP.
During 2014 general election, BJP had won 17 Lok Sabha seats of the total 28, followed by Congress Nine and JD(S) Two.
Devegowda had opted to contest from Tumakuru, after his traditional seat Hassan from where he had won four times, the party opted to nominate his grandson Prajwal Revanna, son of PWD Minister H D Revanna.
However, he is facing a stern test against four time MP and BJP candidate G S Basavaraju who is a local. The DCM said the two party leaders had finished one round of campaign in Tumakuru and it was evident that Devegowda would win with a huge margin.
When asked whether Congress would lose its strong identity by feeding JD(S) as the party had left key segments like Tumakuru, Hassan and Mandya in the Old Mysuru area, Dr Parameshwara said " No since the aim is to defeat the BJP and ensure that Congress President is made the next Prime Minister. ‘’We need to bend a little to prevent a major fall later. Devegowda is our joint candidate. He will also work towards achieving our Party aim. This factor is behind our joint campaign strategy.’’
He said the coalition candidates stood a better chance to win in Karnataka at the cost of the BJP and this was evident from the first round of joint campaign the two parties had taken up in the State.
Earlier, speaking at a election meeting in Kolala village, the DCM said Tumakuru had attracted the attention of the entire country and Congress was ready to support him wholeheartedly.
He also warned the party cadre that if they tried to play ‘double game’ they will face the consequences. ‘’If you want to leave, you leave. But don't bitray your party,’’ he added.
Mr Mudduhanume Gowda, who had threatened to contest as a rebel candidate after Congress left the segment to JD(S) and even filed his nomination papers only to withdraw later, said it is natural law that unexpected things happen.
‘’We never imagined that in Tumakuru we will pit a common candidate. But I am sacrificing in the name of Congress party. I am ready to be a tragic hero rather than betray my party,’ the sitting member and two time MLA from the district said.
Mr Muddahanume Gowda, a former District Judge, had joined Congress three decades ago. He said he was proud of his achievement during last five years as a parliamentarian as he successfully brought the HAL Helicopter division to the district, ensured completion of long standing railway projects and road development.UNI