Karnataka

‘If high command names a Dalit as CM, I will welcome it’

Siddaramaiah, former CM, and G.T. Deve Gowda, JD(S) MLA representing Chamundeshwari constituency, share the dais at a programme in Hinkal in Mysuru on Tuesday.

Siddaramaiah, former CM, and G.T. Deve Gowda, JD(S) MLA representing Chamundeshwari constituency, share the dais at a programme in Hinkal in Mysuru on Tuesday.

Siddaramaiah, former CM, on Tuesday said he will welcome any proposal from the Congress high command to name a Dalit as Karnataka CM if the party comes to power in the State.

Speaking after inaugurating a new floor of the Ambedkar Bhavan in Hinkal in Mysuru, Mr. Siddaramaiah pointed out that the High Command has conventionally named the Chief Ministerial candidate in the Congress after eliciting the opinion of MLAs. “I have absolutely no objection if the High Commands names a Dalit as CM. I will be the happiest person and will welcome it,” said Mr. Siddaramaiah.

He was responding to an appeal made by former Mayor of Mysuru Purshotham to the Congress to name a Dalit as CM candidate in the coming Assembly elections. “Whether a person from among the Dalits, Backward Classes or Minorities becomes a Chief Minister, I will be happy. But, a decision on the CM is taken by the High Command based on the opinion of the MLAs,” he said.

Political opportunities

Mr. Siddaramaiah pointed out that a Dalit can become a CM only in the Congress regime, except for Mayawati, who managed to occupy the coveted post after the BSP came to power in Uttar Pradesh. He said he was in favour of the deprived communities getting such political opportunities. He recalled that B.R. Ambedkar had remarked that political power was key for the development of any community.

Ambedkar’s principles

He also dwelt at length on Dr. Ambedkar’s principles of providing opportunities to deprived communities and said only people with commitment to his ideals can implement the provisions of the Constitution he had drafted. “So, it is important for people with commitment to the Constitution to come to power. People without commitment to the Constitution will not implement the provisions of providing opportunities to the underprivileged sections,” he said.

Congress rule

Pointing out that SCs and STs comprised 24.1% of the State’s population, Mr. Siddaramaiah said his government was the first in the State to bring in a rule to allocate funds under Special Component Plan (SCP) and Tribal Sub Plan (TSP) as per the population of the community. “Before 2013, there was no rule on allocation as per the population”, he said. Also, soon after becoming the CM, Mr. Siddaramaiah said he had waived off the loans and the interest taken by the poor from Ambedkar Development Corporation, D. Devaraj Urs Backward Classes Development Corporation and the Karnataka State Minorities Development Corporation.

The programme was also attended by former Minister and JD(S) MLA representing Chamundeshwari Assembly constituency G.T. Deve Gowda.


Our code of editorial values

This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Aug 14, 2022 7:30:52 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/if-high-command-names-a-dalit-as-cm-i-will-welcome-it/article37409738.ece