The BJP is known for its hypocrisy, goalpost shifting, and double standards. Therefore, its stance on the government formation in Karnataka does not come as a surprise. It is no surprise that the BJP is now claiming that the post-poll alliance between Congress and JD(S), and its bid to form a government is "undemocratic". The BJP is suddenly reminded of "morality", something that was missing from their approach during government formation in Goa and Manipur. The BJP should be the last party in the country to lecture on "morality" or "ethics".
Let's have a closer look at the Karnataka results, and the conclusions we can draw from them. The Congress and the JD(S) has the support of over 56.5% of the total votes polled. If anything, the support for the BJP has gone down from its 2014 figures. In 2014, BJP won 17 Parliament seats in Karnataka, and therefore 132 Assembly segments. The BJP got 43% of the votes polled in 2014. In this election, the party's vote share came down to 36.2%. It is therefore clear that Karnataka's mandate is for the Congress-JD(S) combine and not for the BJP, that has fallen short of the simple majority, and recorded decreased vote-share. On what grounds can Mr. BS Yeddyurappa clamour for an invitation from the Governor to form the government?
Further, we would like to give the BJP a useful reminder about what it did in Goa, Manipur, and Meghalaya. In Goa, in a house of 40, BJP formed a coalition with 12 MLAs. In Manipur, in a house of 60, BJP formed a coalition with 21 seats. This, in a situation where the Congress had 28 MLAs. Further, in Meghalaya, in a house of 60, BJP forged a rag-tag post-poll coalition. The single-largest party, Congress, with 21 seats was not even invited to stake a claim for government formation.
In Karnataka, the message from the voters is clear. The combination of parties of Congress, JD(S), and BSP have clearly and unequivocally stated to the Hon’ble Governor that theirs is a post-poll coalition, with the requisite numbers. There is no scope for any confusion. If the BJP looks at its numbers, then it will understand that it has no mandate to form a government in Karnataka.
Aspiring for political power, and expansion throughout the country is admirable. But this aspiration should not transform into a cash-fuelled craze for power everywhere there are elections. JD(S)'s HD Kumaraswamy took the state by storm when he revealed that the BJP was offering Rs. 100 crore per MLA and some cabinet posts, to lure the party into forming a government with them. The BJP will have to respect the mandate given by the people of Karnataka. The ball is now in the Governor's court and going by both numbers and recent precedence, we are confident that the Governor will invite the post-poll coalition that has the numbers in place to form a stable government. We hope that the Governor will take note of the BJP's horse-trading manoeuvres, as revealed by Kumaraswamy, and exercise his discretion, as per the powers vested in him by the Constitution.