Bangalore, Apr 17: Janata Dal (Secular) National President H D Devegowda today declared that he would keep away for the time being from any activity that led to the formation of a third front at the national level.
Speaking to newspersons here, he said he had decided to concentrate on building his party in Karnataka at present and accord top priority to creating a congenial atmosphere that ensured the acceptance of the party at all levels.
He reiterated that the party would maintain equi-distance from both the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Mr Devegowda said 48 MLAs, including 39 against whom disciplinary action notice had been served for joining hands with the BJP to form a coalition government under the leadership of H D Kumaraswamy in the state, had attended the meeting convened by him on April 15. The meeting was convened to discuss the strategy for the coming elections to five city Corporations and 32 city and town Municipalities.
To a question, he said the 39 MLAs were allowed to attend the meeting as they had not done anything to harm the party. If they had approached the Election Commission and sought recognition, the party would have lost its symbol and suffered irreparable damage. However, the party's Disciplinary Action Committee was looking into the issue and its decision was final, he added.
He said as the people had not given a clear mandate to any political party in the state, the JD(S) leadership had chosen to join hands with the Congress. But two thirds of the party MLAs had gone against the will of the party leadership and formed an alternate government with the BJP's support. However, the ideology of the JD(S) would never change and the party would fight the elections on its own, he asserted.