It appears that all is not well with the coalition government in Karnataka. Days after the election of the chairman of the legislative council, differences have emerged between the Congress and JD(S). The problems started after the coalition government leader Prathap Chandra Shetty took over as the chairman of the legislative council and thereby replaced acting chairman and JD(S) MLC Basavaraj Horatti.
Horatti, a senior leader from the JD(S) party, was one of the front-runners for the post. From the Congress party, senior party leader SR Patil’s name also the rounds. But the sudden change in the choice of the coalition government is said to have upset many senior leaders in the Congress and JD(S) alike.
Outraged by the coalition government’s move, Horatti said, “The Congress has never delivered on it's promise. This is a coalition government and we ought to follow coalition dharma. According to the coalition principle, the speaker of the lower house will be selected by the Congress and naturally the chairman of the upper house was supposed will go the JD(S). I was a front-runner for the post. But they've violated the principle. They've selected their candidate for the post because they have the numbers. Our party leaders requested them (Congress) but they didn't budge. Deve Gowda met Congress leaders in Delhi and spoke about the issue but nothing happened.”
Fumed Horatti also said that although the Congress party had earlier promised to provide unconditional support to the JD(S), they(Congress) continued to manipulate and influence the government’s decisions. He also added that chief minister HD Kumaraswamy ought to assert his power and not give in to Congress party’s manipulation.
“I've advised our party members. The Chief Minister must not to end up as a mere rubber stamp of the Congress. The CM should have taken a tough stand when they failed stand by their word.” -Basavaraj Horatti, Senior JD(S) leader
Horatti’s statement comes in the same time when former Karnataka Water Resources Minister and Congress leader MB Patil complained of discrimination against Lingayat leaders in the Congress party. Interestingly, both Horatti and Patil spearheaded the Lingayat agitation in the state.