: In a blow to the Congress-JDS coalition government in Karnataka, the lone BSP Minister N Mahesh today quit his post citing personal reasons, but said he would continue to support the ruling coalition.
His surprise move came days after BSP chief Mayawati announced that her party would not forge an alliance with the Congress "at any cost" for the Assembly polls in Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh, in a setback to efforts to forge opposition unity.
Speaking to reporters after submitting his resignation toChief Minister H D Kumaraswamy,Mahesh said he quit to focus more on his assembly constituency Kollegal and to strengthen his party ahead of the Lok Sabha elections.
"There had been a campaign against me in my constituency that I have camped in Bengaluru and was not focusing on Kollegal.
Also, there was a need to strengthen the party base ahead of the Lok Sabha elections," said Mahesh.
He said the Chief Minister told him that he would considerhis resignation.
Mahesh vowed to continue his support to the coalition government and said he would campaign for the JD(S) during the bypolls for three Lok Sabha and two assembly seats in the state on November 3.
"I do not have any grouse against anybody in the government. As a minister I did my best and toured the state. This resignation is purely due to personal reasons," he said.
BSP had contested the May assembly polls in a tie-up with JD(S), which in a post-election understanding joined hands with Congress to form the government following a fractured verdict.
Causing ripples in the coalition, Mahesh had also recently hit out at the Congress, BJP and JD(S), saying they were responsible for economic and social inequality in the country and projected BSP as the champion for the cause of the oppressed.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)