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Karnataka power play: Congress chalks out strategy
Vicky Nanjappa in Bangalore | October 08, 2007 13:45 IST
For Siddaramaiah, former JD-S leader and Congress MLA, it looks like a comedy of errors. He parted ways with the JD-S and joined the Congress because of his differences with H D Deve Gowda. Now the Congress is contemplating an alliance with Gowda's party.
Moreover, senior leaders like D K Shivkumar and R L Jalappa, who are sworn opponents of Deve Gowda, are against any sort of alliance with the JD-S. While Shivkumar is considered to be a star campaigner for the party, Jalappa controls considerable vote banks in rural Karnataka.
Jalappa, Siddaramaiah and Shivkumar will support the coalition only if the Congress gets to choose the Chief Ministerial candidate from the JD-S. These leaders state that in case the Congress extends outside support to the JD-S, they will do so on condition that Gowda's family members are kept away from the seat of power.
Party stalwarts like Dharam Singh and Mallikarjun Kharge, however, seem to have no problem with the Congress teaming up with the JD-S, as they feel that their main efforts should be directed towards preventing the BJP from coming to power.
Senior leader Prithiviraj Chauvan has been holding several meetings with party leaders in the state. He told rediff.com that he will convey the views of the state Congress leaders to the party high command. The decision of the high command will be binding on all.