Next challenge for JD(S)-Cong is to implement its individual manifestos
Round one has been won by the new Congress-JD(S) alliance. Kumaraswamy will take over as Chief Minister and Dr. Parameshwar will be his deputy. The post of Speaker would go to the Congress while that of deputy will be with the JD(S).
The next battle would be the allocation of portfolios and both parties have said that the same would be done after the floor test is over on May 24. This could pose a bit of a challenge to both the parties as there are several aspirants. The Congress would get 22 ministers while the JD(S) would have 12 including the Chief Minister's post.
While both the parties have agreed to come up with a common minimum programme, it would be interesting to see how they implement their individual manifestos. This would be a real big challenge and both parties had made different promises.
Take for instance the loan waiver promise made by the JD(S). The party had said that it would waive all farmer loans at both ancillary and nationalised banks. The Siddaramaiah led Congress government had waived off farmer loans up to Rs 50,000 taken from cooperative banks.
The other point of contention is with regard to the Lokayukta. The JD(S) had criticised the Congress and said that it was weakening the institution. The JD(S) also questioned the setting up of the ACB or Anti-Corruption Bureau and said that it was aimed at suppressing complaints of corruption. The key point made during the debate was that the ACB was under the control of the state, while the Lokayukta was an independent body.
The other point of contention would the canteen war between the two parties. The Congress had set up the Indira Canteens. The JD(S) countered this by coming up with Appaji Canteens.
Another interesting aspect would be with regard to the caste census. The Congress had not released the caste census as the elections were approaching and it feared a backlash. However the party had justified the same stating that it would bring about transparency when it came to targeting subsidies. The JD(S) had however criticised the census. If the Congress insists on releasing the caste census it would be interesting to see if the JD(S) would agree to the same.