Bengaluru: Three months after the fall of the coalition government, the JD(S) was scrambling to stop an exodus from its party to the saffron ranks, even as it appears to be sending a tough message to the Congress that it is not open to an alternative alliance as long as former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah is at the helm of affairs in Karnataka.
On Wednesday, the Dal expelled former deputy chairman of the legislative council, Puttanna, who is identified with the Siddaramaiah camp.
Mr Puttanna has for the last few years shared a love-hate relationship with the Gowda family. Although he became deputy chairman of the legislative council, he kept company with Gowda detractors like N Cheluvarayaswamy and was recently critical about the party leadership. He also often gave statements that all the MLCs would desert the JD(S).
He paid the price. By Wednesday evening, JD(S) president, H K Kumaraswamy issued orders, expelling him from the party's primary membership.
Hours before the order was issued, Mr Gowda made a cryptic comment that there were no permanent friends or foes in politics.
He also said his family did not nurse a grudge against Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa. His comment was made in the context of Mr Yediyurappa's statement that he had spoken to him. While admitting that he had, the former Prime Minister claimed the two men had not discussed anything political and he had contacted him for another reason.
"A file pertaining to a book house in Bengaluru was held up in the government and so I spoke to the Chief Minister's principal secretary, Laxminarayana and to the Chief Minister too about it. I did not speak anything else.
There is no rule that we should not talk to each other ,'' he said, adding that there were no permanent enemies in politics and rival leaders spoke to each other depending on the political circumstances.
“I don't stand to gain or lose anything politically by this. We can't say what happens in politics and how the situation changes. Mr Siddaramaiah and I fought, but also spoke from the same platform. Mr Yediyurappa too is not our enemy,'' he said....