Janata Dal (Secular) chief HD Deve Gowda on Tuesday announced that his party will fight next year’s Lok Sabha elections independently and not become part of the National Democratic Alliance, PTI reported.

Last week, Gowda’s son and former Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy told reporters that the JD(S) had decided to work together with the Bharatiya Janata Party as an Opposition in the interest of the state.

His comments fueled speculation that the JD(S) could join the NDA for the Lok Sabha polls. The speculation gathered steam after a report said that Kumaraswamy met senior BJP leaders during his recent visit to Delhi.

Both the JD(S) and BJP MLAs had also boycotted the Karnataka Assembly session after 10 BJP legislators were suspended from the House on July 19 for “indecent and disrespectful conduct”.

On Tuesday, Gowda said that the JD(S) will field candidates only in those places where the party has a strong presence.

“Whether we (the party) win five, six, three, two or one seats, we will fight the Lok Sabha elections independently,” the veteran leader asserted.

His comments came at a time when Prime Minister Narendra Modi is trying to revive the NDA ahead of the Lok Sabha elections.

Twenty-six Opposition parties have also joined hands and formed a coalition to take on the BJP. The new grouping called Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance or INDIA has pledged to “safeguard the idea of India as enshrined in the Constitution”.

Also read:

Chemistry vs arithmetic: Can Opposition unity defeat Modi?