HD Kumaraswamy was on Wednesday sworn in as the Karnataka chief minister, heading the Congress-JD(S) coalition government in the state. He was administered the oath of office and secrecy by Governor Vajubhai Vala at a grand ceremony in the Vidhana Soudha complex in Bengaluru.
Vala also administered the oath to state Congress chief and prominent Dalit leader G Parameshwara as the deputy chief minister. Other members of the council of ministers will be inducted after the Kumaraswamy government wins the trust vote on Friday.
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Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated Kumaraswamy and Parameshwara for taking oath as CM and deputy CM, and wished them for their tenure ahead.
After being sworn in as Karnataka's 28th chief minister, Kumaraswamy exuded confidence that the Congress-JD(S) coalition government better than any one-party government in the state, adding that it will concentrate on working for the public and the betterment of the state.
Attired in the traditional "dhoti" and white shirt, Kumaraswamy took the oath in the name of God and the people of "Kannada Nadu".
This will be Kumarawamy's second term as the chief minister of Karnataka since 2007, when he last held the post for 20 months.
Also Read: Karnataka swearing-in ceremony: HD Kumaraswamy takes oath as CM, Parameshwara sworn in as deputy CM | As it happened
Congress president Rahul Gandhi, his mother and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, N Chandrababu Naidu, and Pinarayi Vijayan, her counterparts in Andhra Pradesh, and Kerala respectively, were present.
Tejashwi Yadav, the Leader of Opposition in the Bihar Assembly, BSP chief Mayawati and SP leader Akhilesh Yadav, who have struck an alliance in Uttar Pradesh, NCP leader Sharad Pawar, CPM general secretary Sitaram Yechury, and socialist leader Sharad Yadav were also in attendance.
The show of strength by a galaxy of national leaders and regional satraps is being seen as a strong signal to the BJP about the possibility of formation of a broad-based front to take on the BJP-led NDA in the Lok Sabha polls next year.
Thousands of JD-S and Congress cadres and supporters from across the state, especially the Mysuru region thronged the venue braving the rain.
The BJP boycotted the ceremony and observed a "Black Day" during which it held statewide protests against the new coalition government, which it called "unholy".
Karnataka CM to take floor test on Friday
Karnataka's new Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy will take the floor test in the Assembly on Friday to prove that the Janata Dal-Secular-Congress coalition government enjoys a majority in the house.
"I will take the floor test on Friday to prove that our coalition government has a majority in the Assembly," Kumaraswamy told reporters after taking oath as Chief Minister in front of the state Secretariat building here.
Governor Vajubhai Vala directed Kumaraswamy on May 19 to take the floor test after forming his government with the Congress.
Though the JD-S won 37 seats, its effective strength in the 225-member house is 36, as Kumaraswamy won from Channapatna and Ramanagaram seats. The Congress has 78 seats.
With the support of one MLA each from Bahujan Samaj Party, a regional outfit, and an independent, the alliance has the combined support of 117 members as against a halfway mark of 111, excluding the Speaker, in the Assembly whose present strength is 222.
"We have tied Ashwamedha horse of Modi," says Kumaraswamy
Kumaraswamy said the JD(S) along with Congress had succeeded in tying Prime Minister Narendra Modi's 'Ashwamedha' horse (victory horse) in Karnataka, fulfilling his aim.
"I had said after the Uttar Pradesh election results came out that my aim is to tie the Ashwamwedha horse of Narendra Modi and Amit Shah (BJP President). Today both Congress and JD(S) together have tied their Ashwamedha horse in Karnataka," Kumaraswamy said.
Calling himself a "child of circumstances," Kumaraswamy said he decided to join hands with the Congress on the advice of several political leaders in the "national interest."
Speaking to reporters after being sworn-in as chief minister, he said "Probably, in the days to come, Amit Shah has to go to Narendra Modi with lifeless Ashwamedha horse, as we have tied their horse."
He said many people were having doubts about whether the coalition government would last and assured them that he would provide a stable government.
"There is doubt whether this government will last long. With my conduct and that of my government, I will ensurethat this opinion will change. I want to make it clear to thepeople of the state," he said.