Former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Friday said the 14 Congress MLAs who joined the BJP last year would have remained with the party if the Congress had not formed a coalition with the JD(S).
Addressing the ‘Grama Janadhikara’ convention of Chamundeshwari Assembly constituency, organised in connection with the upcoming gram panchayat elections, he said the Congress MLAs jumped ship because of former Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy’s inability to run the government.
The MLAs fell out with the then Chief Minister because he was functioning from a five-star hotel instead of attending office and meeting legislators, Mr. Siddaramaiah said. Even if the MLAs met him and handed over representations, he would simply hand them over to officials without bothering to follow up, he added. “During my five-year tenure as Chief Minister, not even one MLA went against me.”
Mr. Siddaramaiah also said the coalition government with Mr. Kumaraswamy at the helm would not have come about in the first place had he opposed the party high command’s decision to form the coalition.
On C.M. Ibrahim
Mr. Siddaramaiah also claimed that former Union Minister and party colleague C.M. Ibrahim would not join the JD(S). Fielding reporters’ queries in Mysuru, he asked, “He [Mr. Ibrahim] is an MLC from the Congress. How can he go?”
Mr. Ibrahim had recently met JD(S) supremo and former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda and former Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy in Bengaluru.
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