‘Insignificant’: HDK dismisses unease in JD(S) over BJP tie-up
Senior Janata Dal (Secular) leader HD Kumaraswamy on Tuesday downplayed the disquiet over alliance with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)
Senior Janata Dal (Secular) leader HD Kumaraswamy on Tuesday downplayed the disquiet in the party terming it “insignificant”, a day after Karnataka unit president CM Ibrahim defied party supremo and former prime minister HD Deve Gowda’s decision to form an alliance with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for the 2024 Lok Sabha polls.
Addressing reporters at his residence, the former Karnataka chief minister said the media was unnecessarily giving so much attention to the development. “The media seems to be giving this development significant attention. Ibrahim has the freedom to express his views. There’s no need for the media to be concerned, [as] the party’s senior leadership will make the decisions,” Kumaraswamy said.
When asked about Ibrahim’s assertion that he heads the “original” JD(S), Kumaraswamy said: “If Ibrahim believes he heads the original JD(S), he should display the original signboard.”
On a proposal to remove him and his son Nikhil Kumaraswamy — the demand was raised by some leaders and workers during a meeting convened by Ibrahim on Monday — the former chief minister said: “Let Ibrahim do as he pleases. We won’t provide clarification for such trivial matters. Appropriate steps will be taken.”
Not taking the development so quietly, Deve Gowda refused to entertain questions from the media, saying everything would be revealed in three days.
JD(S) legislator and party’s core committee member GT Deve Gowda, meanwhile, alleged that the rebellion by Ibrahim was influenced by the Congress. He even cautioned Ibrahim against following the Congress’s lead.
“The JD(S) is a regional party and it will become stronger. We will hold talks with Ibrahim. Deve Gowda had given him the state president’s position out of respect for the sentiments of the minorities,” he said. “Ibrahim is angry over not being taken to New Delhi for alliance talks but Deve Gowda will speak to him. The party supremo has told us not to worry and that things will be sorted out.”
The statements came amid growing unease within the JD(S) over its alliance with the BJP for next year’s general elections. On Monday, Ibrahim said that the JD(S) will not join the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA), defying the line taken by the party leadership.
He even urged Deve Gowda to reconsider the alliance with the BJP, hinting at a potential division within the JD(S) and claiming that several party legislators were in contact with him. Ibrahim claimed that he and his supporters represented the “original” JD(S) due to their commitment to “secularism” and said that as the state president he had the authority to make decisions regarding the party in Karnataka.
“Our first decision is that the JD(S) will not go with the NDA. The second decision was a request to Deve Gowda that he should not give his consent to this alliance,” Ibrahim had told reporters on Monday.
Ibrahim had said he was willing to support the Congress to defeat the NDA.
On September 22, Kumaraswamy announced the decision to be part of the NDA after meeting Union home minister Amit Shah and BJP president JP Nadda in New Delhi. The two parties have come together to take on the Congress in the next year’s general election.
On Tuesday, Ibrahim lodged a police complaint after an alleged fake letter under his name and announcing expulsion of Kumaraswamy and his son from the party was widely circulated on social media.
“Both me and the party are embarrassed because the fake letter that has gone viral… Miscreants are creating confusion among the party workers. Since the fake letter has gone viral, my personal image has been affected,” he said in the complaint, lodged at the JC Nagar police station.
Ibrahim requested the police to take action against those responsible for the fake letter.