An intimation of mortality even before promised date of delivery is not what any parent looks forward to, but by getting tantalisingly close to the half-way mark, yet not quite reaching there on its own, the BJP finds itself in just that position. For the record, the BJP has 110 MLAs of its own. Five of the six independents have offered letters pledging support to the BJP. Together, it adds up to 115 in the 224-member house, but in politics, numbers are all, and the possibilities are pregnant.
Three of the independents are Congress rebels, one is a JDS rebel, and the other a BJP rebel. News reports say mine owners Janardhan Reddy and Karunakar Reddy were present during the “talks” with some of the Independents. There are rumours of ministerial portfolios for a couple of them. Good news as that may be, will such support hold good in the long run? Will the independents stick with the BJP through thick and thin? Will the B.S. Yediyurappa government last out its full term of five years? Will the BJP have to “break” the JDS, as H.D. Kumaraswamy as alleged, to stay in power?
Photograph: The lotus blooms on a gate in Sultanpet in Bangalore (courtesy M.S. Gopal/ Which Main? What cross?)