At the end of a long week in politics, you couldn’t miss some patterns—none of the three times BJP leader B.S. Yeddyurappa became chief minister of Karnataka had been a cakewalk for him. So it has been with his nemesis too, H.D. Kumaraswamy who is now the state’s new ruler. And, after the seven-day political scramble in the wake of a split poll verdict in the state came a star-studded swearing-in ceremony that is raising opposition hopes for the big Lok Sabha battle next summer.
Not since 1988, when various Janata Parivar leaders came together to form the Janata Dal has there been a similar plank in Bangalore, says a senior Congressman. Nor is the timing any less significant: the Modi government steps into its fifth year this week. The political heft at Kumaraswamy’s inauguration—Sonia Gandhi, Mamata Banerjee, N. Chandrababu Naidu, Sharad Pawar, Mayawati, Akhilesh Yadav, Tejashwi Yadav, Sitaram Yechury, Pinarayi Vijayan, Arvind Kejriwal, Ajit Singh—was obvious enough. Yet, like 30 years ago, when Janata leaders grouped together against the then ruling Rajiv Gandhi regime at the Centre, will the anti-BJP rapport being fostered now have a definite bearing on the general elections next year?