The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Karnataka believes the victory of 11 rebel Congress-Janata Dal (Secular) legislators on the BJP ticket and the induction of 10 of them as minister have given the much-needed stability to the B S Yediyurappa government. While this has also led to disgruntlement among some party seniors and loyals, the Opposition has been relentless in its criticism. The leader of the Opposition in the Assembly, Siddaramaiah, on Thursday asked Chief Minister Yediyurappa about his government’s longevity. He said there was no guarantee the BJP government would continue for three years. Responding to this, Yediyurappa said “we will be here (continue in power) ...” Siddaramaiah then said “if you are continuing ... what trouble will I have, but we don’t have a guarantee that you will continue... because a lot of things are happening within your party...”
Congress' Bihar dilemma
Congress leaders in charge of Bihar are disappointed with the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), its ally. The RJD refused to give the Congress one of the two Rajya Sabha seats the alliance was set to win in the state. In the event, the RJD candidates won both seats unopposed. Congress leaders say the RJD is not preparing in earnest for the Assembly polls, scheduled in October-November. They are of the view that RJD leader Lalu Prasad’s children, particularly those currently in politics, are apprehensive about the fate of several cases of corruption against them. Sources say some have suggested the Congress explore other alliances, including one with Left parties under the leadership of Communist Party of India’s (CPI’s) Kanhaiya Kumar. However, the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist), which has a respectable support base in pockets, might not want to sever its ties with the RJD.
Cricket before floor test
While a nervous Congress tries desperately to bring back its rebel MLAs from a Bengaluru resort before the floor test in Madhya Pradesh (MP), Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLAs, including former chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, are reportedly holidaying at a resort in Sehore district near Bhopal. Videos showing Chouhan, MP BJP President V D Sharma, and other party MLAs enjoying a game of cricket are ubiquitous on social media. In one video, after an MLA is seen hitting the ball very hard, someone in the background says, “Agli ticket gayi tumhari (you are not going to get the ticket in the next elections).” The reason? The bowler was none other than Chouhan himself. Chouhan also shared some pictures on Twitter with the caption “Howzat?”