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End of Congress-JDS honeymoon period? Clashes erupt over portfolios even as organisations demand Muslim Deputy CM

Days after the high drama over forming a government in Karnataka that ended sworn-in CM BS Yeddyurappa resigning from his post now reports of clashes and conflicts between the two parties and even within the Congress are emerging. According to reports, many conflicts over the position of deputy CM are coming to the fore.

Some reports had also claimed that Congress had wanted two deputy CMs and the JDS was not ready for it. Amidst the confusion, there were also reports that the Muslim factions want a deputy CM from their community. DK Shivakumar, the Congress leader who had been crucial in securing the political support and alliances after the elections were reported to be interested in the post of Deputy CM, but later reports suggested that the JD(S) was opposed to it. The disagreements ran so high that the JDS was reported to be against the very post till yesterday. As there is a considerable hold of Lingayats in the Karnataka politics, the Lingayat body reportedly wanted a CM from their community.

A group of Muslim organisations also briefed the media and demanded that either the 7 time Congress MLA Roshan Baig or some other leader from the Muslim community be made the Deputy CM in Karnataka.

The Congress had offered the CM seat to HD Kumaraswamy in its last-minute attempt to forge a post-poll alliance. JDS, though has won only 37 seats, apparently holds the key to power. As per latest reports, the Congress and JDS have agreed upon the post of Deputy CM and speaker going to Congress. As HD Kumaraswamy is scheduled to take oath as the CM of Karnataka tomorrow noon, the number of cabinet berths being allocated to members of the two parties are yet to become clear.

Together the Congress and the JDS claim to have the support of 117 MLAs. There were many altercations and incidents of mistrusts and rivalry between the leaders of the two parties in the past and without a clear majority, the coalition’s stability and co-ordination look dubious. DK Shivakumar, who was the Minister of Energy in the previous government had also stated that he is not sure of the future of the alliance.

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