Deve Gowda and Siddaramaiah Share Stage After 12 Years ‘to Defeat BJP’ in 2019

Bengaluru: Ahead of the by-elections scheduled for November 3, the seniormost leaders of the coalition partners in the Stte on Saturday put up the image of a united team. Former Prime Minister Deve Gowda, chief minister HD Kumaraswamy, former chief minister Siddaramaiah, home minister G Parameshwara, Karnataka Congress president Dinesh Gundu Rao and water resources minister DK Shivakumar shared stage in an attempt to boost the morales of their respective party workers to win the upcoming bypolls.

Deve Gowda and Siddaramaiah are sharing the stage after 12 years. “For the first time in 12 years Siddaramaiah and I are on the same stage. For the first time, we’ll be contesting together in the upcoming bypolls. In all five seats, we will bring secularism with all our powers and the problems brought about by the central government,” said the former prime minister in what was the beginning of a series of attacks against the BJP from the leaders present as they vowed to keep the latter out.

“I know many of our local leaders might not be able to digest this coalition, but we will work together to ensure that their concerns are addressed. I want to appeal to all local workers to cooperate in this great work. Please forgive our previous mistakes and bless us with votes,” he added.

However, Deve Gowda refused to address any questions about their past proving the cliche that there are no permanent enemies or friends in politics. It was in February this year that the JDS supremo said grooming Siddaramaiah was his biggest mistake. The relation between the two had strained in 2005 when Siddaramaiah was ousted from JDS, following which he joined the Congress.

“For these bypolls we are fighting together. With the upcoming Lok Sabha elections in mind to defeat the communal BJP, all secular forces should unite and not allow secular votes to split and help BJP, it is with this in mind that we formed coalition government and in the bypolls also we’re fighting together,” echoed Siddaramaiah, the ruling coalition’s coordination committee chairman.

“I will be visiting all constituencies and if the necessity arises we will campaign together. I will go wherever a joint rally is held. Our common enemy is BJP politically and ideologically. Defeating them is our responsibility. We are working together and there are no differences among us. This will be the beginning for the Lok Sabha polls,” he said.

The by-elections on November 3 will be held for five seats – two assembly and three parliamentary constituencies. The two parties are contesting in a pre-poll alliance in all five. While JDS will contest from Ramanagara assembly constituency, Shivamogga and Mandya Lok Sabha constituencies, the Congress will contest from Jamakhandi assembly and Ballari Lok Sabha constituencies.

“There might have been some differences at some point, but that’s all in the past. And even though they are two bodies, they are one soul. We are working together not just to win all five seats but all 28 Lok Sabha seats in 2019,” said chief minister HD Kumaraswamy.

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