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Karnataka: Rumblings in coalition are more about who gets the better pie in 2019

By Vicky Nanjappa
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    Bengaluru, Aug 28: Former chief minister of Karnataka, Siddaramaiah was at it again. After saying that he could once again become CM of Karnataka, his statement was backed by Agriculture Minister, Shivashankar Reddy, who also said that there was a possibility of such a development.

    Amidst the rumblings, Chief Minister, Kumaraswamy urged the congress to resolve the state issues to ensure that a successful anti-BJP front at the national level is formed. Kumaraswamy appeared upset with Siddaramaiah and felt that he was not cooperating with the running of the government. He however downplayed Siddaramaiah's statement and said that there was no threat to the coalition.

    Karnataka: Rumblings in coalition are more about who gets the better pie in 2019

    Sources tell OneIndia that the Congress-JD(S) combine faces no threat as of now. The coalition would faces such issues, but it would stay intact at least till the 2019 elections are over. The JD(S) wants the Congress to announce the seat sharing formula for 2019. The Congress on the other hand would hurl such threats only to ensure that it does not have to give away too much to the JD(S) in terms of seats.

    Also Read | Karnataka politics: Short term measures without a long term vision?

    Reddy's remarks

    Reddy's remarks coming days after Siddaramaiah's comments about becoming chief minister again fuels speculation that all is not well within the Congress-JDS coalition.

    To a query on the government's future, Reddy said, "We all fought elections under the leadership of Siddaramaiah. Though there were possibilities of Congress coming to power and he becoming the chief minister, due to reasons better known to all, we could not get the majority. Thus, he lost the chance of becoming chief minister again."

    "Suppose tomorrow the two parties (Congress and JD-S) sit together at the coordination committee meeting and take some decision for some change, then the change will happen," he told reporters at Chamarajnagar.

    Also Read | Will Karnataka have a new CM in September?

    A similar reaction came from Congress MLA and former JD(S) leader Cheluvaraya Swamy, who too backed Siddaramaiah and flayed those who were trying to "isolate" the former chief minister.

    "Nobody can isolate Siddaramaiah. He has the leadership quality. A towering personality, Siddaramaiah is honest andhas done lots of good works," he said. He said election result might have been adverse due to caste-based politics but Siddaramaiah gave an administration for five years that was admired across the country.

    "Though Congress got 80 seats under Siddaramaiah's leadership, he remains unquestionable in the party," he said to a question about alleged efforts within and outside the party to "isolate" Siddaramaiah from becoming chief minister again.

    Addressing party workers in Hassan district on Friday, Siddaramaiah reportedly said if people wish, he will become chief minister again.

    The former chief minister's remarks kicked up a row with some seeing it as having an unsettling effect on the JDS-Congress government.

    Asked if he wants to be Chief Minister, Siddaramaiah later said "If people bless me, I will want to become the chief minister, but not now. After five years when next election is held."

    Responding to Siddaramaiah's comments, Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy has said anybody could become a CM in a democracy.

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