Indications that all may not be well between JD(S) and Congress despite showing BJP the door in Karnataka, an emotional HD Kumaraswamy on Saturday broke down at a public event here as he highlighted pains of leading a coalition government.
Without giving out details of possible differences with Congress, Kumaraswamy said that he cannot accept bouquets and garlands for becoming CM of the state because he is unhappy. "While you may be happy thinking that your Anna or Thamma has become the chief minister, let me tell you that I’m not. I know the pain of coalition govt. I became Vishkanth and swallowed pain of this govt," he said, wiping tears from his face.
#WATCH: Karnataka CM HD Kumaraswamy breaks down at an event in Bengaluru; says 'You are standing with bouquets to wish me, as one of your brother became CM & you all are happy, but I'm not. I know the pain of coalition govt. I became Vishkanth&swallowed pain of this govt' (14.07) pic.twitter.com/cQ8f90KkFT
— ANI (@ANI) July 15, 2018
Kumaraswamy had taken oath as the state CM on May 23 after a bitter battle for power in Karnataka. His party had emerged third - behind BJP and Congress - but when BS Yeddyurappa quit just before a show of strength on the floor of the assembly, Kumaraswamy took the mantle with support from Congress. Things have not been too well since.
While reports of rift have been aplenty, Kumaraswamy himself admitted last month that JD(S) and Congress have differences over presenting the state budget. "Some have suggested that let the budget be presented after the parliament election, so there are issues," he had said while also asking Congress president Rahul Gandhi to intervene in the matter.
Before this, a video went viral which showed former Karnataka CM and Congress leader Siddaramaih expressing his displeasure over the fresh budget.
Kumaraswamy had previously also said that he is at the mercy of Congress. "The people of the state rejected me and our party. I had sought an absolute majority. Today, I am at the mercy of the Congress. I am not under the pressure of the 6.5 crore people of the state," he had said before clarifying that he meant no disrespect to people of the state.
It is Congress which had rushed to give unconditional support to JD(S) after a hung verdict in the Karnataka elections. This despite JD(S) being a distant third. While Congress' G Parameshwara became the deputy CM, there are reports of discord on the issue of cabinet expansion as well. On Sunday, Parmeshwara questioned Kumaraswamy's remarks on coalition government. "How can he say that? He must be definitely happy, CM has to be always happy, if he's happy we'll all be happy," he was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
Reports of rifts such as these are likely to embolden BJP, a party that had slammed the alliance, called it opportunistic and many of leaders predicting the coalition to come apart at the seams in the time to come.