Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president G. Parameshwara on Monday met D.K. Shivakumar, who has been elected for the sixth time from Kanakapura Assembly Constituency, in an effort to convince him to take oath.
Mr. Shivakumar is the only MLA who is yet to take oath, which is attributed to his dissatisfaction over denial of ministership.
Mr. Parameshwara, who had a lengthy discussion with Mr. Shivakumar at the latter’s residence, is learnt to have informed him (Mr Shivakumar) that the party high command was aware of his seniority and his value as a party worker.
However, later, Mr. Parameshwara told reporters that Mr. Shivakumar had not taken oath as an MLA because he was “tied up with personal work.” He said that there was “nothing more to it and the Opposition parties should not make it into an issue unnecessarily.”
Terming the visit as a courtesy call, the KPCC chief said: “Mr. Shivakumar has never expressed displeasure over being denied a berth in the ministry. But scores of people from his constituency want him to become Minister to fulfil their expectations. The high command is aware of this and an appropriate decision will be taken at the right time.”
Mr. Shivakumar said that the fact that he was denied a berth and his not taking oath as an MLA were not connected. “The voters of Kanakapura Assembly Constituency have elected me with a margin of 31,000 votes. They had taken “harake” (vow) in several temples for my victory and I was busy visiting places of worship to fulfil their harake. I am waiting for the right time to take oath,” he added.
Party sources, however, said the visit was more than a courtesy call. “It was to avoid further embarrassment to the party, whose priority is to focus on the Lok Sabha polls. It is likely that all disgruntled elements (there are more than 20 MLAs aspiring to become Ministers) will team up after the ongoing legislature session ends. The high command has directed the KPCC chief to ensure that there are no problems within the party in the run up to the Lok Sabha polls,” the sources added.