Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Dissension in Kerala unit not to affect Third Front: Gowda

1 Apr 2009
MANGALORE: Janata Dal (Secular) supremo H D Deve Gowda assured his Left friends that discord in the party unit in Kerala will not have any major bearing on the Third Front. There is no question of allying with the Congress-led United Democratic Front in that state, Gowda said and added he would request party leader M P Veerendra Kumar, who is sulking at being a denied party ticket, to reconsider his stand in larger national interest.

Addressing media persons here on Wednesday, Gowda urged Kumar not to take any decision that would have a bearing on the Third Front. "He has stood by JD (S) loyally for more than three decades, and whatever grouse he has, should be sorted out through discussions," Gowda said. The party's national general secretary will write an open letter to Veerendra Kumar in this regard and it will be released to the media as well, he noted.

The former Prime Minister was in a patronizing mood when he held out hope to party MP M Shivanna from Chamarajnagar, who recently switched allegiance to the Congress. Stating that he felt sorry for Shivanna, whom the Congress ditched by denying him a ticket to contest from Chamarajnagar parliamentary constituency, Gowda said, "I have first hand experience of Congress ditching people. It is a new experience for him."

The JD(S) has already announced its candidate from Chamarajnagar and has started his campaigning, Gowda said and added that he would try and accommodate Shivanna in the next assembly elections. Asked if he, as national president of JD(S) would welcome Shivanna back in to the party fold, Gowda said, "I will welcome anyone who swears by secular principles. Shivanna is our own man," he added.

On a reported statement by JD(S) state president H D Kumaraswamy that the party will not field a candidate in Bellary due to its inability to take on the financial might of mining barons there, he said, "A couple of them have volunteered to take up this onerous task. We will take a decision in this regard at the party level shortly," he said. The JD (S) will announce its list of candidates for the remaining seats in the next two days, he added.

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