Show of opposition might at Kumaraswamy’s oath-taking ceremony

Bengaluru: The swearing-in ceremony of newly elected Karnataka Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy on Wednesday marked a rare occasion where opposition parties from all over the country set aside their differences to join hands in a show of might against the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led Centre.

Notable opposition leaders present at the Vidhan Soudha were Congress’ Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi, Samajwadi Party’s Akhilesh Yadav, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu, Rashtriya Janata Dal’s (RJD) Tejashwi Yadav, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, Communist Party of India (Marxist)’s Sitaram Yechury, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and Nationalist Congress Party’s Sharad Pawar.

The rival-turned-allies in Uttar Pradesh, Akhilesh Yadav and BSP’s Mayawati arrived amid loud cheers and shook hands on the podium set up to seat the political dignitaries.

The ceremony also saw a reluctant union of rival parties in West Bengal as Trinamool Congress’ Banerjee was seen sharing stage with Yechury.

The high-voltage Karnataka polls were seen as the election that would set the tone for the 2019 general elections, and post the verdict, it seems, it indeed has given us a glimpse of the alliance which may come up before next year’s parliamentary elections. The BJP, which bagged the highest number of seats, was dealt a heavy blow after the Congress and Janata Dal (Secular) joined hands following the poll results.

The alliance of Congress and the JD(S) has brought together other political parties in support of the non-BJP government.

Speaking to ANI earlier, CPI(M)’s Yechury welcomed the move “that stopped the BJP from forming a government.”
The former ally of BJP in Andhra Pradesh, Telugu Desam Party (TDP)’s N. Chandrababu Naidu termed the resignation of the three-day chief minister B.S. Yeddyurappa as a “victory of democracy.”

The election result for 222 out of 224 assembly constituencies resulted in a fractured mandate, with the BJP emerging as the single largest party (104 seats) only seven seats short of a simple majority mark of 111.
The Congress with 78 seats and JD(S) with 37 seats, and two Independent candidates formed a post-poll alliance with a total of 117 MLAs.

What followed was a high-voltage political drama in the state, as Governor Vajubhai Vala invited Yeddyurappa to form a government on May 16, and gave him 15 days to prove majority, amid huge uproar by the opposition.

On May 18, the Supreme Court, on the plea of the Congress and the JD(S), shifted the floor test to May 19. Unable to garner the required number by the deadline, Yeddyurappa stepped down from the post of the chief minister before the floor test could be conducted, mere three days after he was sworn in. (ANI)