Once sworn enemies, DKS, HDK call truce

Bengaluru: With their parties putting together a post-poll alliance, Janata Dal (Secular) Chief Ministerial candidate, H D Kumaraswamy and senior Congress leader, D K Shivakumar, both prominent Vokkaliga leaders, appear to have called a truce.

Known as the snake and mongoose of state politics for years, the duo seem to have now become 'bhai-bhai.'  On Saturday, they shook  hands and showed the victory sign after Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa announced his resignation after just two days in office. In fact, since the day that the Congress extended its support to  the JD(S) with its 37 seats in a House of 222 , Mr Shivakumar has been involved in negotiating a post-poll alliance with it, and also personally supervising the shifting of both Congress and JD(S) legislators to resorts and hotels to check their poaching by the BJP.

But  till last year, he often had spats in the Assembly with the JD(S) leader and they never spoke to each other outside it. When Mr Kumaraswamy tried to take control of Ramanagaram,  Mr Shivakumar flexed his muscles to snub him.  And the JD(S) leader  held him responsible the defeat of his wife,  Anita in Channapatna in the 2013 Assembly polls.  Despite his strained relations with Mr Kumaraswamy, Mr Shivakumar remained respectful to his father and JD(S) supremo, H D Deve Gowda, even falling at his feet in full public view at a function organised by the Karnataka Vokkaliga Sangha.  

The Congress leader finally broke the ice with Mr Kumaraswamy when he personally went to  take his signature on a report on power purchase that was tabled in the legislature, although the JD(S) leader had  lambasted him for the constitution of the legislature committee to probe the alleged irregularities in power purchase during the BJP-JDS coalition government.

He later also shared a dais with Ms Anita Kumaraswamy at a function in Channapatna. Their relations improved further  after Mr Kumaraswamy contested from both Ramanagaram and Channapatna, helping to defeat a common enemy, C P Yogeshwar , who quit the Congress to join the BJP and seek re-election from the latter constituency. 

Following the results of the present poll,  it is said  a pontiff of a powerful mutt asked Mr Shivakumar to fully support Mr Kumaraswamy as it would mean  installing a new government headed by a Vokkaliga leader. And his now unstinting support for him appears to have helped mend bridges even more. 

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