Kolar/Karnataka: Most opinion polls in the run-up to the Karnataka assembly elections may have given JD(S) the third spot but former chief minister HD Kumaraswamy has claimed that his party will get a clear majority.
"I am totally confident that I will get a clear majority on my own. I am not bothered about the (opinion) polls as I have information about the ground reality," Mr Kumaraswamy told NDTV in an exclusive interview.
The JD(S) that enjoys support among Vokkaligas, the next politically dominant group in the state after Lingayats, is seen to have a strong base in southern Karnataka. But the JD(S) leader said this time his party will do well in the northern parts of the state as well.
"In the last five days, I have campaigned in 30-32 constituencies in north Karnataka. Take it from me, I will be going to get more than 35-38 seats in northern Karnataka," he asserted, while on the campaign trail in Kolar district in southern Karnataka.
Claiming that his rallies in the farming belt of the north are drawing huge crowds, Mr Kumaraswamy blamed both the BJP and the Congress for what he called letting down farmers.
"Now, people are thinking about the JD(S). We are talking about solutions to uplift the farming community. That is attracting crowds," he said.
Some opinion polls have predicted a hung assembly in which case the JD(S) would play the kingmaker. Asked who he would support in such a case, Mr Kumaraswamy said "we will not be going to back Congress or BJP".
"And even if there is a hung assembly, as some reports have suggested, we will play a major role," he said.
After the 2004 assembly polls threw up a hung verdict, the JD(S) joined hands with the Congress to form the government, with Dharam Singh as the Chief Minister. The alliance didn't last when Mr Kumaraswamy withdrew support and became Chief Minister with the BJP's support. That coalition collapsed after the JD(S) refused to hand over the chief ministership to the BJP after 20 months according to a power-sharing agreement.
Mr Kumaraswamy's father former Prime Minister HD Deve Gowda has called the 2006 alliance between the JD(S) and BJP a big mistake. But Mr Kumaraswamy's own assessment is that he did the "good thing".
"At that time if I would have gone with the BJP to form the government after the backstab by the Congress, by this time, this party (JD-S) would have been finished," he said.