Politics

Rahul Gandhi and Kumaraswamy discuss ‘matters of mutual interest’ at Delhi meet

Janata Dal (Secular) leader HD Kumaraswamy met UPA chief Sonia Gandhi and Congress president Rahul Gandhi in New Delhi on Monday even as both parties have started bargaining behind the scenes on portfolios in the new Karnataka assembly.

On Sunday, Kumaraswamy, who will take oath as Karnataka’s 25th chief minister on Wednesday, dismissed reports that JD(S) is working out a power-sharing formula with the Congress to head the government for 30 months each.

After the May 12 elections delivered a fractured mandate, BJP leader BS Yeddyurappa had formed the government, but resigned on Saturday as chief minister without facing a trust vote as he fell short of the required number of seats.

Here are the live updates:

10pm: Kumaraswamy tells reporters he has got a chance to serve the people again by God’s grace and his parents’ blessings despite a fractured mandate in the May 12 elections.

“Although the people did not bless me and our party with a clear mandate, I have got an opportunity again to serve them by God’s grace and my parent’s blessings.”

9:15pm: Rahul Gandhi confirms he will be attending the swearing-in ceremony of JD(S) leader HD Kumaraswamy on May 23.

“I had a warm and cordial meeting this evening, in Delhi, with Shri H D Kumaraswamy ji. We discussed the political situation in Karnataka and other matters of mutual interest. I will be attending his swearing in as CM of Karnataka, on Wednesday, in Bengaluru,” tweets Gandhi.

8:30pm: HD Kumaraswamy criticises BJP president Amit Shah press conference in a series of tweets. He questioned why Amit Shah was describing the Congress-JD(S) alliance as unholy. The CM-designate added that the alliance is celebrating because Karnataka will get a secular government and a communal party has been left out of power.

7:35pm: I wanted to show my respect and regards to the Gandhi family. That’s why I came here. I requested them to be present at the oath-taking ceremony and both of them agreed to be there, says HD Kumaraswamy after his meeting in Delhi.

Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan will also attend the swearing-in ceremony on May 23.

7:05pm: Kumaraswamy meets Sonia and Rahul Gandhi while JD(S) leader Danish Ali and Congress’ KC Venugopal are also present.

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CM designate HD Kumaraswamy met Sonia Gandhi and Congress President Rahul Gandhi in Delhi. JD(S) Danish Ali and Congress’s KC Venugopal also present.

7pm: Kumaraswamy arrives at the residence of Congress president Rahul Gandhi in Delhi.

6:50pm: Chief minister designate HD Kumaraswamy leaves Karnataka Bhawan to meet UPA chief Sonia Gandhi and Congress president Rahul Gandhi.

6:35pm: Akhil Bharat Hindu Mahasabha moves Supreme Court against Karnataka Governor’s decision inviting Congress-JD (S) to form government: PTI

6.29 pm: Karnataka CM designate HD Kumaraswamy holds a telephonic conversation with CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury and invites him to attend his swearing-in ceremony on May 23.

6:10pm: TV reports say Kumaraswamy will meet Rahul and Sonia Gandhi at 7pm today. He has arrived at the Karnataka Bhawan in Delhi.

5:35pm: I don’t think Amit Shah has knowledge of or respects the Constitution. Even if he has the knowledge of the Constitution, he doesn’t respect it: Congress leader Anand Sharma’s rebuttal to the BJP president’s statement.

5.28 pm: Karnataka CM designate HD Kumaraswamy meets BSP chief Mayawati in Delhi.

5.00 pm: JD(S) leader and Karnataka CM-designate HD Kumaraswamy arrives in Delhi, to meet Congress leaders Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi.

5:00pm: Congress has falsely claimed that Yeddyurappa ji asked for 7 days, from the Governor, to prove majority. If it was the case, they should have asked for the letter for him. Congress lawyer lied in the Court, said BJP President Amit Shah. He was referring to the Supreme Court hearing in which the Congress challenged Karnataka governor Vajubhai Vala’s decision to give BJP leader BS Yedyurappa 15 days to prove his majority.

4:28pm: In Goa and Manipur, the Congress never staked claim to form the government. That’s the reason the Governors called us to form the government in the states, answers Shah when asked about his belief that BJP deserved to form the government in Karnataka as it was the single largest party.

4:25pm: It was our (BJP) right to stake claim to a government in Karnataka, Shah says.

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Humpe horse trading ka aarop lagaya hai, lekin Congress ne poora ka poora astabal (stable) bech khaya hai. We had the right, so we claimed for it (to form the govt): BJP President Amit Shah

4:23pm: Congress leaders have accepted that the audio tapes released by Congress were false and it was released to influence the case in the Supreme Court, says Amit Shah on allegations of horse-trading.

4:22pm: The BJP president claims that the party lost 13 seats by a margin that was less than NOTA.

4:21pm: Congress and JD(S) formed an alliance against the people’s mandate. This is what I call an unholy alliance, Amit Shah repeats his charge against the coalition government.

4:20pm: There’s a positive spin from this election — the Congress now respects institutions, such as the Supreme Court, Election Commission and even EVMs: Amit Shah

4:17pm: Congress has found a new method to pronounce their loss as a victory: Amit Shah’s scathing attack on Congress.”We’ve taken 14 states from the Congress in four years.”

4:15pm: It was not a ‘confused’ mandate since we were short of just 7 seats in Karnataka, the BJP president says.

4:13pm: “What is the Congress celebrating about? That they lost their seats, that their ministers lost elections or that they are left only in PPP — Puducherry, Punjab and Parivar,” Amit Shah says referring to the abbreviation first used by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a rally in Karnataka.

4:11pm: The BJP has emerged as the single largest party in Karnataka. I want to thank the BJP workers for their work in Karnataka elections: Amit Shah

4:10pm: BJP president Amit Shah holds a press conference, says the Karnataka mandate was against the Congress. “There is no confusion otherwise. The Congress CM (Siddaramaiah) lost one seat and won the other by a small margin.”

4pm: JD(S) leader Danish Ali says Kumaraswamy Ji is coming to Delhi to personally invite leaders of his pre-poll and post-poll alliance for his swearing in ceremony.

3.40pm: Kumaraswamy to meet BSP chief Mayawati in Delhi today, reports ANI.

3.15pm: Top Congress leaders have briefed Gandhi on the latest political developments in Karnataka, before the crucial deliberations on power-sharing arrangement with Kumaraswamy, reports PTI.

According to party sources, Ghulam Nabi Azad, Ashok Gehlot and KC Venugopal met Gandhi this morning and apprised him about the sense prevailing among the party MLAs in the state.

1.45pm: Imposition of President’s Rule would have been the right thing to do in Karnataka, former Chief Election Commissioner TS Krishnamurthy told PTI.

On the first-past-the-post election system, where a candidate winning highest number of votes is declared winner, Krishnamurthy said it should be done away with. Read full story

12.53pm: “They (BJP) offered me minister post and all, it’s a fact. I don’t know about Hebbar (Congress MLA Shivaram Hebbar who reportedly claimed that Congress lied about bribe tape), I can talk about myself. Yeddyurappa, Sriramulu and Muralidhar Rao spoke to me,” Congress MLA BC Patil tells ANI.

12.43pm: Chief minister Arvind Kejriwal will attend Kumaraswamy ‘s swearing-in ceremony, according to a Delhi government official.

12.37pm: “We are 100% happy. Give and take policy is there, even in Bengaluru’s Municipal Corporation alliance is functioning smoothly for three years. Of course, some people in both parties will have to sacrifice as all can’t become ministers,” ANI quotes Congress’ Ramalinga Reddy on reports of Congress rift with JD(S).

12.10am: Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal will attend oath-taking ceremony of HD Kumaraswamy in Bengaluru on May 23. He was invited by JD(S) national president HD Deve Gowda, reports ANI.

12.03pm: “Who told you? This is all bogus and fake news. This is not true,” says Kumaraswamy, on reports of resentment within Congress over alliance with JD(S).

11.34am: All India Veerashaiva Mahasabha writes to Kumaraswamy, demanding Shamanuru Shivashankarappa of Congress, a Veerashaiva leader, be made home minister in the new government and five other leaders from the community be made ministers in the cabinet, reports ANI.

11.21am: When asked if Congress-JD(S) government will complete its full term, DK Shivakumar says, “Time will answer. I don’t want to answer it now. We have various issues, options before us, I can’t tell right now.”

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Congress leader DK Shivakumar says, ‘Time will answer. I don’t want to answer it now. We have various issues, options before us, I can’t tell right now’, when asked if Congress-JD(S) government will complete full term

Read: DK Shivakumar, the man who kept the Congress flock together in Karanataka

11.17am: Congress leader DK Shivakumar tells ANI, “Rahul Gandhi has taken decision that there should be secular government here. That’s what the entire country needs and that’s why we have taken this stand (alliance with JDS). I had to swallow all this bitterness, this is my duty.”

10.35am: HD Kumaraswamy says he has invited Rajinikanth to come to Karnataka and look at the condition of the reservoirs. “Water is not sufficient. I am sure he will understand,” says the CM-designate on Rajinikanth asking new Karnataka government to release Tamil Nadu’s share of Cauvery river water.

9.45am: Kumaraswamy offers prayers at Lakshmi Narasimha Temple in Hassan.

The chief minister-designate will offer prayers at four temples in Karnataka before heading to Delhi. (ANI/Twitter)

9.35am: Karnataka Congress leaders Siddaramaiah, DK Shivakumar and G Parameshwara will also arrive in Delhi today to discuss modalities related to government formation with the party high command.

9.29am: Andhra Pradesh chief minister N Chandrababu’s cabinet colleagues have suggested that he attend the ceremony given his closeness to HD Deve Gowda, a statement from the party said.

“The ministers told Naidu that he should take part in the swearing-in ceremony as it will send the right signals… and he has responded positively,” the TDP statement said.

*Kumaraswamy is expected to arrive in Holenarasipura on Monday morning and visit the Lakshmi narasimha Temple, the Haradanahalli Shiva Temple, the Ranganatha Temple and the Yalimalaka Temple.

*The JD(S) leader will depart for Delhi from HAL Airport in Bengaluru at 11.30am. Kumaraswamy is expected to meet Rahul Gandhi at 3.30pm, followed by a meeting with Sonia Gandhi at 4.30 pm.

*He will leave for Bengaluru in the evening.

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