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To avoid sharing stage with Congress, Rao goes to Bengaluru a day before to greet Kumaraswamy

Congress leaders and regional party heavyweights expected to attend the ceremony

Gulf News

Hyderabad: In a clear reflection of his unhappiness over the alliance of Janata Dal-Secular (JDS) with Congress in Karnataka, Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao has decided to stay away from the oath-taking ceremony of H.D. Kumaraswamyas Karnataka Chief Minister in Bengaluru on Wednesday

However, as a mark of respect for the former prime minister H.D. Deve Gowda, KCR was leaving for Bengaluru Tuesday evening to personally greet Kumaraswamy. He will leave by a special flight and after meeting Kumaraswamy and his father Deve Gowda, KCR planned to return the same night.

An official press release said he was returning Tuesday night in view of important engagements in Hyderabad Wednesday.

Both Deve Gowda and Kumaraswamy had called KCR to personally invite to the ceremony. The event had assumed significance as along with Congress leaders Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi many chief ministers including Mamata Banerjee, Arvind Kejriwal and N Chandrababu Naidu and regional leaders including Akhilesh Yadav, Tejashwi Yadav and Mayawati were expected to turn up in a show of opposition unity.

KCR took the decision to stay away from the ceremony as he was not comfortable sharing the dais with the Congress leadership, Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) sources said.

KCR will be conspicuous by his absence as he was actively wooing many regional parties including JDS to form a non-Congress and non-BJP front ahead of 2019 polls. While TRS leaders were claiming that the formation of JDS-Congress government in Karnataka vindicated their stand that neither BJP nor Congress will be able to form the next government at the Centre, KCR was unhappy that his calculation of keeping Congress out of an opposition front was upset by Karnataka assembly election results.

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