BENGALURU/TUMAKURU: As the Sira bypolls approach closer, bickering between the once coalition partners and now arch-rivals — JDS and Congress — is only escalating with personal attacks taking centrestage. A day after Congress Legisalture Party chief Siddaramaiah deemed the JDS a non-entity, former chief minister and JDS leader HD Kumaraswamy asked what the status of India’s oldest political party — the Congress — was today.
Careful not to name Siddaramaiah, Kumaraswamy only referred to him as a “leader who should be indebted to the JDS”. Lashing out at the Congress’ “inability to form governments on its own” and leaning on other opposition parties to remain relevant, Kumaraswamy said Siddaramaiah will be taught a lesson for his arrogance in the upcoming polls.
“A leader who came to public life because of JDS, became Deputy Chief Minister from JDS, and spoke lightly of JDS even as he was welcoming JDS leaders into his party fold. He has said the JDS is a political non-entity. Is your party, which is unable to find candidates from within and is poaching JDS leaders, a political party then?” asked Kumaraswamy. “As the oldest party in the country what state is the Congress in today? In how many states has it come to power on its own and formed governments? Will this man who should be indebted to JDS answer these questions?” Kumaraswamy asked.
HDK, Siddu spar over secular tag
The Congress and JDS are now sparring over the Muslim vote, and claiming the ‘secular’ tag. Responding to former CM Siddaramaiah’s allegation that the JDS and BJP have forged an alliance for the bypolls, Kumaraswamy alleged at a meeting that Siddaramaiah and BJP have a nexus, and sought to know who had sent JDS sympathiser Dr CM Rajesh Gowda to the BJP as a candidate.
“Rajesh had a business partnership with Siddaramaiah’s son Dr Yatheendra. Rajesh’s father C P Mudalagiriappa was Congress LS member,” he said, appealing to Muslims not to trust Siddaramaiah.
By giving the ticket to late B Satyanarayana’s wife Ammajamma, the JDS is hoping to grab sympathy votes. Trying to convince ticket aspirants, Kumaraswamy told them that this factor will work in Sira too. But Ammajamma is insisting on the ticket for her son B S Satyaprakash, and did not show up at the meeting.