Sunday, May 20, 2018

Random Musings on Developments in Karnataka

Some random ramblings on the Karnataka situation.
The situation appeared grim for the BJP, right from the start. 

Before the Floor Test
took place in the Karnataka Assembly at 4 pm yesterday, the following were possible scenarios I had shared with my Readings Broadcast List on WhatsApp.

(1) The BJP might just scrape through with a little help from some Congress   Lingayat MLAs for two reasons:
a.  their unhappiness with the possibility of a Vokkaliga CM (H. D. Kumaraswamy is a Vokkaliga) and
b.  B. S. Yeddyurappa (BSY) is a Lingayat.

(2) Also, the Congress and JD (S) MLAs know that even if BSY lost the trust   vote, the BJP won’t keep quiet. Over the next few weeks, the party will   try to engineer defections in the INC and JD (S) – thus turning the   numbers in the BJP’s favour.

(3) The fence-sitting INC and JD (S) MLAs also know that if they go out of   power (forming the government now and losing the majority later), they   may just lose the chance to make money (that is why they are in politics, aren’t they?) and stay relevant.
(4) If the BJP would engineer defections, it would be for today and 2019. The Karnataka battle will bruise the BJP in the short term but will pay rich dividends in 2019. Remember, all politics is local.
(5) However, despite all this and more, the BJP may just lose the Floor Test.

(6) BSY might resign before the Floor Test. I shared this message ten minutes before the proceedings started.

As it is, BSY resigned as the BJP could not muster support from the rival parties.

Following the resignation, the INC and its media friends went to town with grand statements that the Constitution has been saved, that democracy has won, and that there is widespread disenchantment with the BJP for its policies of demonetisation and the GST.

Let’s look at the tripe of ‘the Constitution has been saved’. In inviting the single largest party to form government, the Governor strictly went by the law (as laid down by the Supreme Court). If the INC and JD (S) had a pre-poll alliance, the Governor would have invited the alliance.

The Congress says that the BJP was rejected in Karnataka. Only arrogant folks will mouth such laughable statements, especially after the Congress went down from 122 seats to 78 seats while its arch-rival raised its tally from 40 to 104. The Congress’ humiliation cake had an icing: the chief minister Siddaramaiah lost from one of the two seats he contested.      

Consider the dumb idea of ‘democracy has won’. It beats reason when a party with just 38 seats is extended support by a party with 78 seats – the post-poll alliance between the JD (S) and the INC has only one objective: keep the BJP out. The post-poll alliance between the INC and the JD (S) is a marriage of convenience and as with all such marriages, it won’t go far. Too many inflated egos and contesting vote-banks will scupper any chance of a full-term for the alliance.

In the end, I think the biggest loser in the Karnataka saga is the Congress party and the biggest winner is the BJP. The BJP might have lost the Floor Test but in the eyes of the voter in the street, it came across as a victim of the post-poll alliance between opportunistic parties.

One more thing: the noise over the Federal Front and the rejuvenation of the INC is all humbug.

In the Federal Front, super large egos, of regional leaders like KCR, Mamata Banerjee and Chandrababu Naidu, will force them to behave like crabs.

The INC, under Rahul Gandhi, is tottering and losing election after election. Enough said about the INC. 

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