Siddaramaiah calls JD(S) ‘communal’, says won't be surprised if Deve Gowda-led party merges with BJP

After two former JD(S) MLAs joined Congress, Karnataka chief minister Siddaramaiah on Wednesday said it won’t be surprising if JD(S), which is now in alliance with the BJP, merges with it in the days ahead.

“There will be political polarisation and polarisation of votes in the country in the days to come, with communal forces on one side and seculars on the other. BJP will never come out of Hindutva and their plan of creating a Hindu Rashtra. Deve Gowda and family have joined them,” Siddaramaiah said.

Speaking at a party event in Bengaluru, he said that JD(S) is not a political party, it is a Deve Gowda and family party. “It’s the party of a family.” 

“It won’t be surprising if tomorrow JD(S) merges with the BJP….I somehow feel that it will remain as a separate political party until Deve Gowda is there and won’t merge for political reasons, but after that it will merge,” Siddaramaiah said, adding that these days more than BJP, JD(S) leader Kumaraswamy is speaking against the Congress government.

Two former JD(S) MLAs Gowri Shankar of Tumakuru Rural constituency and Dasarahalli’s R Manjunath joined Congress on Wednesday.

Calling the JD(S) “communal”, Siddaramaiah said: “I won’t call the Janata Dal — ‘S’ (Secular), because after joining hands with BJP they have to remove ‘S’. They don’t have the eligibility to have ‘S’ with their party name, because they are no longer a secular party.”

On Gowri Shankar and Manjunath joining Congress, he said: “The leaders have quit communal Janata Dal and have joined Secular Congress and I welcome them.”

Siddaramaiah also mentioned that he along with Gowri Shankar’s father late C Chennigappa were earlier in the JD(S) together.

He said, “when we were there it was Janata Dal Secular.”

“When we called them ‘B’ team of BJP, JD(S) leaders like Deve Gowda and Kumaraswamy — used to get angry, but they are now officially with BJP. What should we call them? Should we still call them JD(S)? They are now only Jananta Dal, if they themselves remove S — Secular — from their name it is good, if not people will remove,” he added.

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Updated: 15 Nov 2023, 07:00 PM IST

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