Is it chief minister Kumaraswamy or ‘chief manager of Congress K’taka ATM’? BJP has an answer
Bengaluru, May 29: Newly-sworn in Karnataka chief minister HD Kumaraswamy has come under fire after he made the controversial remark that "he was at the mercy of the Congress" on Sunday in Bengaluru.
The opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is leaving no stone unturned to attack the Congress-Janata Dal (Secular) (JD(S)) coalition government after the CM's foot in mouth moment where he clearly stated that his government is dependent on the Congress as the people did not give the JD(S) full mandate to rule the state.
The BJP took a swipe at Kumaraswamy on Monday, saying he was the "chief manager (CM)" of the Congress' ATM in the state and that he was lying prostrate at the feet of the Gandhi family.
"Nothing can be sadder than this. This is absolutely demeaning to the democratic fabric of the country and akin to an abuse of India's democracy," BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra told reporters.
He described the current situation as a fall out of the Congress-JD(S) alliance's mockery of the popular mandate in the southern state for petty political interests. The BJP had emerged as the single-largest party in the Karnataka Assembly election by bagging 104 of the 222 seats that went to the polls, but fell short of a majority, allowing the Congress and the JD(S) to join hands and form government in the state.
Patra alleged that for the Congress, Karnataka was its ATM and it had found a chief manager in Kumaraswamy, while the government in the southern state would be run from Janpath -- a reference to the residential address of former Congress chief Sonia Gandhi.
"The Congress has found a new manager for its ATM in Karnataka. We can say this after his (Kumaraswamy's) statement. People are asking who is their chief minister," the BJP spokesperson said.
Referring to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's words, he said for the BJP, the country was family, while for the Congress, the "first family" of the party was the country. "Kumaraswamy is lying prostrate at the feet of a family," Patra said.
He added that former PM Manmohan Singh used to blame the compulsions of coalition politics in the face of allegations of corruption in his government and said there was a feeling of deja vu in Karnataka.
Patra also claimed that various opposition parties were not accepting Congress president Rahul Gandhi as the leader of an anti-BJP coalition.
After the Karnataka Assembly election results threw a fractured mandate, the Congress and the JD(S) quickly stitched an alliance on May 15 (the day results were announced). The new coalition government agreed that Kumaraswamy will be the CM, despite his party and pre-poll alliance partner Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) having won just 38 seats.
The Congress has won 78 seats. Last week, only Kumaraswamy and deputy CM G Parameshwara took the oath of office. The state is still waiting for the appointment of rest of the ministers in the Kumaraswamy cabinet. The entire process has got delayed as Congress president Rahul Gandhi has gone abroad for the medical treatment of his mother and former Congress president Sonia Gandhi.