Bengaluru: The JD-S, which is confident of becoming a kingmaker, is upbeat after the family feud that had threatened to break the unity in the family of former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda was resolved. His son H.D. Kumaraswamy, who single-handedly faced the onslaught of the national parties, the Congress and the BJP, is brimming with confidence.
The party, which was hoping to win the maximum seats in south Karnataka where its roots are stronger, is optimistic about winning seats in the double digits in north Karnataka as well.
Everything seems to have fallen into place for the JD-S at the right time. Bhavani Revanna, the daughter-in-law of Deve Gowda, had made demands for the Hassan ticket. Her sons, MP Prajwal Revanna, MLC Suraj Revanna gave statements in support of their mother’s candidature.
Suraj Revanna even attacked his uncle Kumaraswamy. Deve Gowda himself had to broker peace as Kumaraswamy was not willing to give a ticket to Bhavani Revanna. Ultimately, Bhavani Revanna backtracked and the ticket for Hassan was given to Swaroop Prakash.
Bhavani Revanna came out in the open to support Swaroop Prakash and addressed a public rally where she stressed on the unity of the party and her resolve to get Prakash elected. This has sent the right message at the right time to the JD-S workers.
JD-S legal cell chief and former president of the Advocates’ Association A.P. Ranganath told IANS that till last year, the JD (S) was aiming to become the kingmaker. “In 2023, we are the kings. The party is positioned equally well to win the elections along with the national parties, the Congress and the BJP,” he said.
“We are seeing the 1993 trend in the state (the Janata Dal emerged victorious winning 115 seats). The emotional issue of H.D. Deve Gowda is there. Vokkaligas know that Congress state president D.K. Shivakumar won’t be made CM till Opposition leader Siddaramaiah is there.
“More importantly, when the state was in chaos in the backdrop of the hijab, halal cut crisis and the controversy surrounding the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA), Kumaraswamy was the one voice for the minorities especially Muslims. This will pay rich dividends in the elections,” Ranganath stated.
Kumaraswamy spoke in one voice then. In the Congress, Siddaramaiah and Shivakumar spoke differently for fear of losing the votes of the majority. “We were firm and committed to protect the interests of Muslims,” he said.
Ranganath said that because of the irrigation work done by Deve Gowda, the people in Raichur, Bidar, Kalaburagi and Bidar districts of Kalyan Karnataka are always for the JD-S. “The party always won 1 or 2 seats from the region. However, this time, candidates are coming to the party knowing that they can win. In the north Karnataka districts, the JD-S is going to win 36 to 40 seats. Even in Bhatkal constituency, considered a strong base of the BJP, the huge crowd during the filing of nomination has raised hopes in the coastal Karnataka region as well,” he said.
In Bengaluru, the party is all set to win five seats. The Dasarahalli seat is held by the JD-S and it will retain it. Yelahanka, Yeshwanthpur, Gandhinagar and Basavanagudi constituencies are going to be taken by the JD-S. Anekal constituency in Bengaluru Rural will also be won by the party, he asserted.
Former CM H.D. Kumaraswamy had challenged the national parties that they will have to come to his doorstep after the elections. He appears to be more confident as the polls are nearing.
After the exit of former CM Jagadish Shettar from the BJP, Kumaraswamy had stated that his party does not have such strong leaders. Exuding confidence. Kumaraswamy is banking on his 20-month and 13-month rule as the CM.
By M.K. Ashoka