Special Correspondent

NEW DELHI: Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Tuesday appointed former Meghalaya Governor M.M. Jacob as party in-charge of Karnataka in place of Union Defence Minister A.K. Antony.

Mr. Jacob was simultaneously made a permanent invitee of the Congress Working Committee. He will be in-charge of party affairs in Jammu and Kashmir in place of Union Tourism Minister Ambika Soni.

A veteran Congress leader from Kerala, Mr. Jacob was part of the governments headed by Rajiv Gandhi and G. Narasimha Rao. He did stints in the Home Ministry, Parliamentary Affairs Ministry and Water Resources Ministry.

He was a Deputy Chairman of the Rajya Sabha.

He was appointed as Governor of Meghalaya in 1995 and held that post till recently.

Appointment hailed

Bangalore Special Correspondent reports:

The Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) on Tuesday welcomed the appointment of Mr. Jacob as the party Central leader in-charge of Karnataka affairs. KPCC president Mallikarjun Kharge told presspersons in Bangalore that Mr. Jacob was familiar with Karnataka. He said the appointment was not a sudden move.

He said Mr. Antony, who was earlier holding this post, had told him a fortnight ago that a new person would be chosen for this important job.