JD(S) claims credit for BJP win in at least 12 seats in Karnataka; set to demand its pound of flesh

JD(S) Karnataka chief & former CM HD Kumaraswamy has in the past hinted at wanting agriculture portfolio in the Union cabinet.

ByMahesh M Goudar

Published Jun 05, 2024 | 2:53 PMUpdatedJun 05, 2024 | 2:53 PM

File photo of JD(S) president HD Kumaraswamy with Narendra Modi.

With the emergence of BJP as the single-largest party but short of majority following the declaration of the 2024 Lok Sabha election results, the JD(S) — its alliance partner in Karnataka — is hoping to place its demands before the saffron party leadership after the formation of the new Union government.

The BJP secured 240 seats in the Lok Sabha elections, short of 32 seats to secure the absolute majority of 272. In Karnataka, the BJP contested 25 seats and the JD(S) in the remaining three, where they won 17 and two respectively.

JD(S) sources said that it had played a key role in ensuring the victory of the BJP in at least 12 seats in Karnataka.

The Congress emerged as the second-largest party with a victory in 99 seats, followed by the Samajwadi Party in 37 seats, and the All India Trinamool Congress (TMC) in 29 seats.

However, the BJP-led-NDA managed to get the required numbers for the majority as its alliance partners TDP won 16 seats, Janata Dal (United) won 12 seats, Shiv Sena (Shinde faction) and Lok Janshakti Party (Ram Vilas) won seven seats each, and Rashtriya Lok Dal and Jana Sena won two seats each.

Amidst the political developments, JD(S) president and former chief minister HD Kumaraswamy — who won from the Mandya Lok Sabha seat — flew to Delhi to participate in the NDA meeting on Wednesday regarding the formation of the government.

Also Read: Despite alliance with JD(S), BJP settles for 17 seats in Karnataka, Congress wins nine

JD(S) to place its demands

The JD(S), considering that it played a key role in at least twelve parliament seats for the victory of the BJP in Karnataka, is hoping to place its demand after the formation of the new Union government.

In the elections, Kumaraswamy won from the Mandya constituency and M Mallesh Babu from Kolar, which is reserved for Scheduled Caste (SC).

Incumbent Hassan MP Prajwal Revanna, who is suspended from the JD(S) following accusations of sexual assault against him, lost from the constituency to Congress’ Shreyas Patel.

“We are happy with the performance of the party and the alliance partner. We had settled for just one seat in 2019 and now increased it to two, where both the seats are strongholds of the party,” JD(S) state core committee head and MLA GT Devegowda told South First.

“Only former CM Kumaraswamy will be participating in the NDA meeting regarding the formation of the government. He will speak about the party’s demands to the BJP’s leadership only after the government is formed,” said Devegowda.

When asked how important the role of JD(S) was in the victory of the BJP, Devegowda pointed out: “The JD(S) has played a key role in at least 12 parliament seats, where the BJP has won. These constituencies are among those 14 seats that went for polling on 26 April.”

“JD(S) has a strong presence in Tumakuru, Mysore, Bangalore Rural, Chikkaballapura, Chitradurga, Vijayapura and other constituencies. Though we have a good presence in Kittur and Kalyana Karnataka, it was not effective.”

“The elections appeared to have been fought with overconfidence, which cost us in Kalyana Karnataka. We fought with unity in the polls, which helped the BJP-JD(S) alliance to score 19 out of 28 in the state. The party leadership will place demands before the BJP only after the formation of the government,” elaborated Devegowda.

Also Read: NDA to meet ahead of government formation; AJSU to join meeting

HDK to take part in the NDA meet

A day after the results of the 2024 Lok Sabha polls were declared, Kumaraswamy flew to Delhi to participate in the BJP-led-NDA meeting over the formation of the new government.

Kumaraswamy is all set to return to the Parliament after a gap of nearly 11 years with a victory from the Mandya Lok Sabha constituency.

The former chief minister won by a record margin of 2.84 lakh votes, the second-highest margin of victory in Karnataka after BJP’s Uttara Kannada candidate Vishweshwar Hegde Kageri.

Before leaving for Delhi, Kumaraswamy told reporters: “The NDA allies meeting will be held in the national capital. I would be participating on behalf of JD(S).”

“Nothing will happen. The Congress bid to form government at the Centre will not happen,” the former chief minister said.

It may also be noted that before the polling of the first phase of the Lok Sabha polls, Kumaraswamy, in an interview with PTI, had said: “We being part of the NDA depends on how our party leaders are treated in future. We are sincerely working and we want a long-standing relationship with BJP.”

“The final decision will be taken depending on how we are treated and how much respect we get from the BJP. It is not only the aspiration of the people of Mandya to see me as a Union minister. I come from an agricultural background and given an opportunity I want to be the agriculture minister,” he had said.

(Edited by Muhammed Fazil with inputs from PTI)