While top leaders of the coalition were speaking of patching up and burying differences on Friday, C.H. Vijayashankar, former MP and Congress candidate who lost the Lok Sabha polls from Mysuru to BJP’s Pratap Simha, on Friday spoke in a different language.
He claimed that the alliance between the Congress and the Janata Dal (Secular) was only superficial, and even alleged that his prospects of winning the election had suffered on account of the alliance. “Instead of strengthening us, the alliance weakened us,” he said, claiming that he had lost trust in the alliance.
He, however, expressed hope that the alliance would be strengthened at least now and the coalition government would be saved. He sought to caution the JD(S) that the BJP would lose no opportunity to benefit from the differences among the coalition partners.
He recalled that the JD(S) had polled 1.3 lakh votes during the 2014 Lok Sabha election in Mysuru. “This time, the margin of victory for the BJP is also around 1.3 lakh,” he said, wondering aloud whether the JD(S) votes had been transferred to the BJP instead of the Congress.
He said the JD(S) cannot escape the blame for the failure of the alliance in Mysuru by citing its loss in Mandya. “They should realise that all of us are sailing in the same boat. Our loss is their loss also,” he said.
He said Minister for Tourism and Sericulture S.R. Mahesh, who is in charge of Kodagu, and Minister for Higher Education G.T. Deve Gowda, who is in charge of Mysuru district, owe an explanation for the loss of the “coalition candidate” in Mysuru.
He said he would be meeting Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee president Dinesh Gundu Rao and the former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah to place on record his grievances with regard to the poll debacle.
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