Kumaraswamy to visit Delhi today to meet BJP leadership; alliance talks on agenda

PTI | | Posted by Yamini C S
Sep 21, 2023 10:00 AM IST

JD(S) leader H D Kumaraswamy will travel to New Delhi to discuss a possible alliance between his party and the BJP for the 2024 Lok Sabha polls in Karnataka.

JD(S) leader H D Kumaraswamy on Wednesday said he will be travelling to New Delhi on September 21 to meet BJP central leadership to discuss the possible alliance between both parties in Karnataka for 2024 Lok Sabha polls.

HD Kumaraswamy along with former Karnataka CM Basavaraj Bommai in Bengaluru. (ANI)
HD Kumaraswamy along with former Karnataka CM Basavaraj Bommai in Bengaluru. (ANI)

Dismissing media reports on seat sharing talks between JDS and BJP as mere speculations, he said so far no parleys have taken place in this regard. The former CM also underscored the need for strong opposition against the Congress government that has come to power in the state and said discussions will be directed at this.

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"I'm going to Delhi in the morning. I will be meeting the central government's (BJP) high command tomorrow," Kumaraswamy told reporters in the morning.

Ruling out the possibility of him contesting in the Lok Sabha polls, he said people of Channapatna constituency have voted for him and that he would remain there for the people.

READ | Modi, Shah & central leadership will decide on BJP's alliance with JDS for LS polls: Yediyurappa

Later in the day, speaking to media persons, Kumaraswamy said there is a meeting tomorrow. "after discussions in the meeting, its outcome will be known. All media reports are mere speculation. There has been no discussion regarding seat sharing or other things."

Talks on alliance between both parties have been in the headlines ever since veteran BJP leader B S Yediyurappa, who is also the party's parliamentary board member, had earlier this month said his party will have an understanding with JD(S) for the Parliament elections, and that the regional party will contest in four LS seats in Karnataka, which has a total of 28 constituencies.

However, Yediyurappa subsequently said a final decision has not been taken as Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah, who are busy with other responsibilities, may discuss and decide on the issue in a few days.

Kumaraswamy too on his part had maintained that discussions on BJP and JD(S) contesting the Lok Sabha polls together are still in the initial phase.

Responding to a question on secular stand of JD(S) which is trying to forge an alliance with the BJP, Kumaraswamy said his party respects all communities.

"If there are talks on an alliance, the subject of alliance is different from the stand of the party, on which there will be no compromise. It is the responsibility of our party to respect all communities," he said.

Noting that no party has contributed to the welfare of the Muslim community compared to JD(S), the former CM said, "but how they (community) have treated this party? I can also question that right?"

"There is no compromise in providing an atmosphere which ensures welfare of every household in the state, without any discrimination. I don't want to get into a discussion with any party on our ideology... I know Congress' ideology, they have done politics for last 50 years by forging alliance with parties that were with BJP. Why question only JD(S)?" he asked.

READ | Aim is to defeat Congress’: Former Karnataka CM HD Kumaraswamy on BJP - JDS alliance

The BJP had swept the 2019 Lok Sabha polls in Karnataka by winning 25 seats, while an independent (Sumalatha Ambareesh from Mandya) backed by it won in one seat. The Congress and JD(S) won one seat each.

In the elections to the 224-member Assembly held in May this year, the Congress bagged 135 seats, while the BJP secured 66 and the JD(S) 19.

Following the Assembly poll results, there were reports that JD(S) would enter into an alliance with the BJP to fight the Lok Sabha polls. It was also said that the JD(S) leaders had met BJP central leadership in Delhi in this regard.

However, subsequently JD(S) supremo and former Prime Minister H D Deve Gowda, had indicated that the party will contest Lok Sabha polls alone.

Following the Assembly poll debacle, BJP, wary of its performance in the Lok Sabha elections, seems to be open for an alliance with JD(S), aimed at regaining maximum number of seats, sources from both parties said. The saffron party hopes the votes of JD(S) may get transferred to it, especially in the old Mysuru region where the regional party has significant presence.

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