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Uddhav Thackeray to skip Kumaraswamy's swearing-in due to Palghar bypolls

By Deepika

Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray was invited for the swearing-in ceremony of H D Kumaraswamy as Karnataka chief minister, but "politely declined" as he was busy with campaigning for the upcoming Palghar Lok Sabha bypoll in the state.

Uddhav Thackeray

Former prime minister and JD(S) leader H D Deve Gowda called Thackeray on Tuesday and extended an invite for his son's oath-taking ceremony.

The swearing-in-ceremony of H D Kumaraswamy promises to be a star studded one. UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi, Congress president Rahul Gandhi, West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee, Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan, Andhra Pradesh CM Chandrababu Naidu, Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati, Akhilesh Yadav of the Samajwadi Party, Ajit Singh of the Rashtriya Lok Dal, Tejaswi Yadav of the Rashtriya Janata Dal, Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal, and actor and politician Kamal Hassan are expected to be present at the event that will happen in front of the Vidhana Soudha, the seat of power in Bengaluru.

The Chief Ministers of Odisha and Telangana, Naveen Patnaik and K Chandrashekar Rao will however give the event a skip.

While Patnaik's office says that he has never attended a swearing in ceremony, in the case of KCR pressing engagements have been cited. KCR had however flown into Bengaluru on Tuesday and met Kumaraswamy. During the election campaign, KCR had also appealed to the Telugu voters to back the JD(S).

Another prominent leader who would skip the event is the DMK's M K Stalin. Stalin, who was also expected to be present in order to show the burgeoning opposition consolidation against the BJP, has cancelled his Bengaluru visit and would instead head for Tuticorin in Tamil Nadu where nine people were killed in police firing on Tuesday.

On 28 May, voters in Palghar in Thane district and Bhandara-Gondia in Vidarbha will choose new parliamentarians. All main actors -the BJP, Shiv Sena, and the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP)-are fiercely campaigning for the two seats.

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