New Delhi, May 15: As Karnataka heads towards a hung Assembly, both the JD(S) and the BJP delegations met Karnataka Governor on Tuesday evening to stake claim to form the government. JD(S)’s HD Kumaraswamy met the Governor after an assurance of support from the Congress. He was accompanied by Siddaramaiah, Ghulam Nabi Azad, DK Shivakumar, and other Congress MLAs. Chief Minister Siddaramaiah has already submitted his resignation. BJP’s Chief Ministerial candidate BS Yeddyurappa said to ANI, “100 percent we will make the government,” as he headed to the Raj Bhawan. He said the BJP delegation met the Governor as the BJP was the single largest party and they should be allowed to prove their majority. He wasn’t off the mark as the saffron party had won 104 seats, way ahead of the Congress’ 78 and JD(S)’ 37. Others, including the BSP, make up three seats.
Congress had been sending out feelers for a few days now, with Siddaramaiah, who had been projecting himself as the Chief Ministerial candidate all this while, saying on Monday that he was willing to relinquish his claim to the seat for a Dalit candidate. The JD (S) also confirmed that if it gets to form the government with the Congress’ support, then Kumaraswamy was their Chief Minister candidate. Congress heavyweight DK Shivakumar claimed that many Independent candidates were with his party. “Independent MLA Mr Nagesh & other MLAs are with us. We have the numbers. We want a secular govt in Karnataka,” he claimed. Interestingly, the Congress got a larger vote share than the BJP and still lost the state.
The JD(S) had also been vocal in its inclination towards the Congress, saying that it would ally with the latter if it threw up a Dalit name for the CM’s post. Party leader Danish Ali confirmed that Kumaraswamy had been their chief ministerial candidate from the outset.
Though the BJP has emerged as the single largest party, it won’t be able to stake a claim to form the government on its own. BS Yeddyurappa, who led the party to its historic win in the state, chose to resort to histrionics and said, “The people have rejected the Congress and accepted BJP. People are moving towards a Congress-mukt Karnataka. I thank the people of Karnataka for giving this mandate to the Bhartiya Janata Party. Congress is trying to come to power through back door, people will not tolerate this,” he said. He was obviously alluding to the JD(S) and the Congress’ attempts at getting together the numbers required to form a government in the state.