Wrong message from K’taka

The Karnataka Congress has never been happy with the coalition with JD(S). During the last eight months that the coalition has been in power, Chief Minister H. D. Kumaraswamy expressed his unhappiness with his cabinet colleagues from the Congress party. Once he said he was being treated as a clerk. In his latest outburst he has plainly threatened to resign as he said “if they want, I am ready to step down.” This time he named the former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah whose allegedly overbearing attitude Kumaraswamy was smarting under. Siddaramaiah has also been the subject of controversy in recent times by his behaviour toward citizens. The way he tried to silence a lady who was trying to same something to him in a public meeting is one instance.
The Karnataka Congress leaders have obviously failed to imbibe the spirit of unity of their party president Rahul Gandhi who is eager to forge an all-in unity of all like-minded opposition parties to take on the BJP in the coming elections. The behaviour of the Karnataka Congress leaders will only help strengthen the impression that the Congress is a domineering party that always tries to dominate smaller parties in a coalition and treats them with less respect than they deserve. This impression will not be conducive to forging unity of the opposition parties in which the Congress can at best expect to be treated as primus inter pares or the first among the equals.
The intransigence of Congress leaders in Karnataka may also create doubts among many that the party will not be able to hold together, for any length of time, a disparate coalition of diverse parties, driven together only by their desire to keep the BJP out of power. If the coalition is able to dislodge the BJP and come to power, it must be able to provide a stable and functioning government to the people for full five years. Constant bickering among the coalition partners will vitiate the atmosphere and fail to win the trust and confidence of the people. Rahul Gandhi has to make his party colleagues, from the grass root workers to the State satraps, aware of the great responsibility that has been thrust upon them at this juncture to deal with their coalition allies with respect and trust. A domineering attitude will be self-defeating because the Congress now does not have the strength to go alone. It has to depend on and cooperate with its allies.

Monday, 28 January, 2019