"After the rough and tumble of the #KarnatakaVerdict, we invite all the MLAs to unwind at the safe & lovely resorts of God's Own Country", Kerala Tourism tweeted. This, after the BJP emerged as the single largest party but failed to cross the halfway mark.
It could not be ascertained if Union tourism minister Alphons Kannanthanam, who belongs to Kerala, was behind the tweet, which went viral on the micro-blogging site. Congress took the early lead in the morning from the earliest trends as the day continued to progress BJP came from behind and overtook Congress.
However, it may not just have been merely a marketing strategy to sell Kerala's beaches and hills in Karnataka, a state which made "resort" politics a staple in India's history. When it was clear that the BJP was struggling to reach the half-way mark, the Congress quickly reached out to JD-S leader and former Prime Minister Deve Gowda and agreed that his son HD Kumaraswamy would be Chief Minister of a coalition government. Ironically, a resort in Bengaluru hosted Congress MLAs from Gujarat in the run-up to a bitterly fought Rajya Sabha election in 2017. The tweet was in the wake of Congress and JD (S) coming together to stake claim to form a Government in Karnataka following the declaration of the results. An all-party meeting held in Thiruvananthapuram, led by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan sought the opinion of various parties and they conveyed their opinion to cooperate with the state for exempting the tourism sector from hartals.
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The CPI (M), not surprisingly, is tight-lipped about the possibility of hosting (read protecting) Congress-JD (S) MLAs as the Congress remains its main rival in Kerala.
In a cheeky tweet, the Kerala Tourism Department found a way to promote themselves while making a veiled comment at the resort politics that Karnataka's politicians are famous for.