Post the selection of senior Congress leader K Prathapchandra Shetty as the legislative council chairman on Wednesday, senior JD(S) leader and former minister Basavaraj Horatti accused Congress of arm-twisting JD(S) in general and chief minister HD Kumaraswamy in particular.
Bengaluru: Cracks seem to have reappeared in the Congress-JD(S) coalition government in Karnataka following the appointment of new chairman to the legislative council.
Senior JD(S) leader Basavaraj Horatti has openly criticised this move of dropping him from the race and accused the Congress of arm-twisting the JD(S) party and chief minister HD Kumaraswamy.
"The BJP with the majority in the Lok Sabha polls in 2014, fulfilled the coalition dharma. The LJP having won only one seat was accommodated in the Narendra Modi cabinet. Here in Karnataka, the Congress offered unconditional support and now it has changed. They are trying to hold control on CM," rued Horatti.
Horatti who was asked to file nomination papers for the council chairman post earlier by the JD(S) national president and former Prime Minister HD Deve Gowda, was asked to withdraw on Wednesday to make way for the Congress candidate K Prathapchandra Shetty. It is this development that offended Horatti who happens to be JD(S) party's Lingayat face.
Apart from Horatti, senior Congress leader SR Patil who was also hoping to become the chairman, was upset as the party ignored him.
Both these leaders from the majority community, Lingayat, feel that the coalition has let down Lingayats and the leaders from North Karnataka when it comes to giving a good position.
Denying the accusations of the Congress suppressing JD(S) and ignoring the north Karnataka leaders, Congress spokesperson, Kengal Renu said, "The decision was taken after CM Kumaraswamy and the Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leaders decided to give a representation to the minor community. Since Prathapchandra Shetty is a Bunt community leader, he was preferred," said Renu and added that JD(S) has one seat to fill in the cabinet and they can opt for Horatti.
The difference between the coalition partners will definitely dent their chances in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls and will hand the advantage to the BJP, according to political observers.
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Last Updated Dec 13, 2018, 6:19 PM IST