JD(S) rebels wash dirty linen in public

6 of the 8 rebels claimed Sunday's meeting convened by party patriarch, H.D. Deve Gowda was not aimed at building it, but ruining it.

Bengaluru: Asserting that they were still with the party and had not received any suspension notice, rebel Janata Dal (Secular) MLAs on Monday called for a "more decent" parting of ways if there had to be one.

Speaking to reporters here, six of the eight rebels claimed Sunday's meeting convened by party patriarch, H.D. Deve Gowda was not aimed at building it, but ruining it. "It was held just to provoke the party workers against the rebels," they charged.

Absent at the press conference were prominent rebels, Iqbal Ansari and ZameerAhamed Khan, who have gone on ‘umrah’, a pilgrimage to Mecca.

Expressing his displeasure over the way the affair was handled, Mr N. Cheluvarayaswamy said if the party wanted to take action against the rebels, it could have held a meeting with some of the seniors among them.

“Instead, a meeting of party workers was organised, where posters were torn and ugly messages sent through social media,” he said.

Mr Gowda, Mr Revanna and Mr YSV Datta have stooped to a new low in their criticism and today party workers are being provoked to protest in Mandya and Ramanagar districts. But we will not retaliate the same way. Our conscience does not permit us as we have grown with him. We don't want to damage the party's image, as it has contributed to our political growth. We will not stoop that low,'” Mr Cheluvarayaswamy declared.

Defending the rebels' cross-voting during the recent Rajya Sabha elections, the MLA said they had honestly informed the party about their intention to vote for the Congress. “But even while negotiating with the independents, Mr Kumaraswamy told them he was going to counter us. So we took on the challenge of countering him. While people like Mr Bandeppa Kashampur and Mr Alkod Hanumanthappa are slogging for the party, those like Mr. Narayanaswamy and Mr Saravana are becoming MLCs. What is their contribution to the party?” he demanded.

Mr Cheluvarayaswamy said that neither Chief Minister Siddaramaiah nor BJP state president B S Yeddyurappa were eager to induct the rebels into their parties."Mr Gowda's family is closer to Mr Siddaramaiah than we are,” he claimed.

Recalling that he and Mr Balakrishna had stood by Mr Gowda during his tough times, the MLA pointed out that when the JDS supremo's photograph was removed from the Chief Minister's chamber, it was he who had attacked Mr. Siddaramaiah. “Neither Mr Kumaraswamy, nor Mr Revanna opened their mouths. Our mistake was that we fought to reward our party workers. While they worked, others enjoyed all the power,” he added bitterly. Venting his ire against the Gowda family, Mr Balakrishna claimed that in 2006, after "the rebels made Mr Kumaraswamy Chief Minister”, it was Mr Revanna and Mr Deve Gowda who ran the administration.“Today Mr Gowda says he will get 120 seats and make Mr Kumaraswamy Chief Minister again. If he can pull this off we will retire from politics. If he can't, let him give Mr Kumaraswamy to us and we will make him Chief Minister. Don't ask us how though,” Mr Balakrishna added. Responding to Mr Revanna's remark that “shanis have left the party”, he said the JD(S) leader was himself Mr Kumaraswamy's biggest shani (evil influence). “They believe that if Mr Kumaraswamy becomes stronger, Mr Gowda will become weak. They are not letting him become strong and he knows that,” he maintained.

Accepting Mr Revanna's challenge to take an oath before goddess Chamundeshwari on the cash for vote controversy, Mr Balakrishna said, “All eight of us will come there. Let three of the Gowda family members also come there. We will reveal what happened in all the elections and will swear to tell what is true and what is false,” he added.

Mr Ramesh Babu Bandisidde Gowda, for his part, claimed he had nothing against the party or its leaders. “But since I am from Mandya, I am close to Mr Cheluvarayaswamy. A fortnight ago, Mr Deve Gowda called me and asked if I was going with him and even before I could answer he wished me all the best. I had no option but to go with Mr Cheluvarayaswamy,” he said.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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