United opposition at Kumaraswamy’s oath taking ceremony

The swearing-in ceremony of newly elected Karnataka Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy on Wednesday marked a rare occasion where opposition parties from all over the country set aside their differences to join hands in a show of might against the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led Centre.

Notable opposition leaders present at the Vidhan Soudha were Congress’ Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi, Samajwadi Party’s Akhilesh Yadav, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu, Rashtriya Janata Dal’s (RJD) Tejashwi Yadav, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, Communist Party of India (Marxist)’s Sitaram Yechury, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and Nationalist Congress Party’s Sharad Pawar.

The rival-turned-allies in Uttar Pradesh, Akhilesh Yadav and BSP’s Mayawati arrived amid loud cheers and shook hands on the podium set up to seat the political dignitaries. The ceremony also saw a reluctant union of rival parties in West Bengal as Trinamool Congress’ Banerjee was seen sharing stage with Yechury.

The results of Karnataka polls have brought JDS and Congress together. The alliance of Congress and the JD(S) has brought together other political parties in support of the non-BJP government. CPI(M)’s Yechury welcomed the move “that stopped the BJP from forming a government.” The former ally of BJP in Andhra Pradesh, Telugu Desam Party (TDP)’s N. Chandrababu Naidu termed the resignation of the three-day chief minister B.S. Yeddyurappa as a “victory of democracy.”