HD Kumaraswamy took oath as the next Chief Minister of Karnataka at a grand ceremony outside Vidhan Soudha. The event was attended by several opposition leaders and other chief ministers of non-BJP ruled states, a development which is being billed as a bid to form a broad-based anti-BJP platform before the Lok Sabha polls next year.
G Parameshwara, senior Congress leader and its state unit chief, too took oath as the deputy chief minister.
As per the power sharing arrangement worked out by the two coalition partners, the Congress will have 22 ministers and JD(S) will have 12 berths. The minister will be sworn-in after the floor test slated for Friday.
Officials had earlier said Kumaraswamy will seek a confidence vote on Thursday. The decision to defer the trust vote by a day ostensibly stems from rules that require the election of the speaker before the exercise.
Last week saw dramatic political jostling after Karnataka polls threw up a hung house. While the BJP emerged as a single largest party with 104 MLAs, Congress got 78 and JDS 37. The latter two announced post-poll alliance even as results were coming in on tuesday last week.
Governor Vajubhai Vala’s invite to BJP leader BS Yeddyurappa was challenged by the Congress in Supreme Court claiming they have numbers on their side and should have been called first. The Supreme Court had directed Yeddyurappa to take floor test last Saturday, hence cutting short the 15-day period given to him by the Governor.
Yeddyurappa’s resignation before the floor test paved way for the rule of Congress-JDS combine in Karnataka.
The JD-S’s chief minister-designate said portfolio distribution would be discussed on Friday and a coordination committee would be formed to facilitate smooth functioning of the coalition.
Kumaraswamy, the third son of JD(S) supremo and former prime minister HD Deve Gowda, will be administered the oath of office and secrecy by Governor Vajubhai Vala at 4:30 pm in front of the Vidhana Soudha, the seat of the government in Bengaluru.
The BJP, on the other hand has dubbed the Congress-JD(S) alliance as “unholy” and claimed that the government will not complete its full term. It has also decided to boycott oath-taking ceremony and will observe “anti-popular mandate day” to protest the formation of the coalition government.
Senior BJP leaders would hold a protest in front of Mahatma Gandhi’s statue here, while its workers in black attire will hold demonstrations in districts, state BJP general secretary CT Ravi told reporters.
(With inputs from PTI)