The crisis within the Karnataka coalition government of the Congress and the JD(S) is now out in the open, with the former Prime Minister, HD Deve Gowda, raising doubts on the survival of the ruling government in the state.
Making it clear that all is not well between the coalition partners, Deve Gowda feared that mid-term polls will be held as the Congress was toeing a different line after supporting HD Kumaraswamy for one year. He said that the Congress had promised to support the JD(S) for five years but it now seems the party has lost its strength.
'They (Congress) said they will support us for five years, but their behaviour hasn’t been in line with this promise. Our people are smart. They are watching them (Congress),' he said.
The JD(S) and Congress currently share power, having 79 and 37 MLAs, respectively, in the 225-member House. The two forged a post-poll alliance last year to keep BJP out, but now the BJP had emerged the single largest party winning 105 seats.
Deve Gowda’s remark comes amidst reports of rising differences between the Congress and JD(S) leaders over the functioning of Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy who happens to be the son of HD Deve Gowda. Several state unit Congress leaders are unhappy over being denied key roles in the government despite being the largest constituent of the coalition. The Congress had announced unconditional support to Kumaraswamy in May last year after the state assembly polls delivered a hung verdict. The BJP is the single largest party in the House with 105 MLAs.