By-election defeat not a worry: Deve Gowda

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NEW DELHI, September 13:  The former Prime Minister and Janata Dal (Secular) president, H.D. Deve Gowda, on Wednesday said the defeat of the party in the recent by-elections in the Bangalore Rural and Mandya Lok Sabha constituencies, both held by the JD(S), had not worried him.

“Instead, it has given me more courage to fight back and oppose both the Congress and the BJP, and revive the organisation in Karnataka. I am not a coward, I am a born fighter,” he said.

Talking to The Hindu on the phone from Bangalore, he said such defeats would not demoralise him. In the 1989 Assembly polls, he got just two seats. But in 1994, he was able to form the government. “This kind of defeats will not hurt me.”

But this defeat had come as an eye-opener for the party on the functioning of some party leaders, including his son H.D. Kumaraswamy, who had been replaced as JD(S) State president with an ad hoc committee headed by the former Minister, A. Krishnappa.

During the run-up to the polls, the Congress had alleged that the JD(S) had a secret understanding with the BJP.

Mr. Gowda said the party’s relationship with the Left parties in Karnataka and Kerala would continue. To a question, he said he was not bothered about Narendra Modi and Rahul Gandhi being projected as prime ministerial candidates of the BJP and the Congress.

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