Three Ministers from the two districts inducted
With the induction of senior Congress legislator Qamar-ul Islam as Cabinet Minister and Sharanprakash Patil as Minister of State on Saturday, the district has bounced back to prominence in the State Cabinet.
Gulbarga and Yadgir have three Ministers — two Cabinet rank and one Minister of State — in the Siddaramaiah Ministry: Mr. Islam (Gulbarga) and Baburao Chinchansur of Yadgir, and Dr. Patil of Gulbarga, which is a windfall compared to the poor treatment meted out to the districts during the terms of the Bharatiya Janata Party-Janata Dal (Secular) coalition government, or the previous BJP government.
However, some Siddaramaiah supporters have been omitted, such as six-time MLA and the former Minister Malikayya Guttedar, and five-time MLA and the former Minister A.B. Maalaka Raddi.
Mr. Islam, a six-time MLA, has represented Gulbarga Lok Sabha constituency in his long political career. In the Veerappa Moily Cabinet, he held the Housing and Labour portfolios, and is considered the face of Muslims in Hyderabad Karnataka. He is also a powerful orator, and does not identify with any of the factions in the Congress, despite being close to many senior party leaders at the State and Union levels.
Dr. Patil, a postgraduate in medicine, began his career as a worker in the youth Congress. He was identified as a supporter and confidante of M. Mallikarjun Kharge, Union Labour and Employment Minister, early in his career. It was because of Mr. Kharge’s insistence that he was given the party ticket to contest from Sedam in the 2004 Assembly polls, which he won by a considerable margin. After that victory, he went on to score similar wins in the 2008 and 2013 elections.
Dr. Patil is known for his meticulousness and perseverance. He is also president of the District Congress Committee.
As for Mr. Chinchansur, his appointment seems to have stirred a hornet’s nest in Yadgir. The Congress workers there have not taken kindly to his elevation, and the omission of locals such as Dr. Maalaka Raddi and Raja Venkatappa Naik.