JD(S) to revamp strategy in state, may support BJP in Lok Sabha polls

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The meeting was held at the residence of former CM H D Kumaraswamy.

BENGALURU: Ahead of the Lok Sabha and local body elections in Karnataka, the Janata Dal (Secular) is likely to support the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in an effort to strengthen the party base at the grassroots across Karnataka.

In connection with this, a meeting was held on Wednesday in the state capital at the residence of former chief minister H D Kumaraswamy in the presence of former Prime Minister H D Deve Gowda.

As per party sources, opinions have been sought by the MLAs, ex-MLAs, and senior party leaders about supporting the BJP in the Lok Sabha election. Most leaders have given their opinion in favour of an alliance with the BJP. The final call will be taken by party supremo HD Deve Gowda.

With JDS not being invited to be a part of the joint opposition I.N.D.I.A alliance, the party is gravitating towards the BJP. However, it will not be easy for the leadership to convince the party cadre, given that the JD(S) enjoys signficant minority support, especially in the Old Mysuru region of the state.

Former chief minister H D Kumaraswamy has claimed at various times that the JD(S) will fight alone, while H D Deve Gowda had said the party cadre were not slaves of any National party. Despite these claims, the party, which won only 19 seats in the 2023 Karnataka Assembly elections, knows that its survival depends on supporting a larger national alliance.

In 2019, JD(S) had won just one Lok Sabha seat from the family pocket borough of Hassan where H D Deve Gowda had made way for his grandson Prajwal Revanna. Now Prajwal Revanna’s Lok Sabha membership is also at stake as the Karnataka High Court has disqualified him, stating that Prajwal had filed false affidavits during the 2018-2019 general election.

The BJP, which enjoys the support of the Lingayats in the state, is looking to gain by allying with the JD(S) which has a strong base amongst the Vokkaligas, the other dominant caste in Karnataka. (ANI)

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