No Deputy Chief Minister post for Parameshwara


He is among the four to be inducted into Cabinet

After two-days of hectic consultations, the Congress high command has finally given the green signal to the much-awaited expansion of the State Cabinet headed by Chief Minister Siddaramaiah.

Mr. Siddaramaiah will induct four legislators into his Ministry. They are Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president G. Parameshwara (MLC), A. Manju (Arkalgud MLA), Vinay Kulkarni (Dharwad Rural MLA), and Manohar H. Tahasildar (Hanagal MLA).

Sources in the government and the party told The Hindu that the swearing-in ceremony of the four legislators as Ministers would take place at the Raj Bhavan on Thursday evening.

After a meeting with Central leaders of the party in New Delhi on Wednesday, Mr. Siddaramaiah told presspersons that the Cabinet expansion was “most likely tomorrow” (Thursday).

This means that there would be no Cabinet reshuffle. The last Cabinet expansion had taken place on December 31, 2013 and D.K. Shivakumar and R. Roshan Baig were inducted.

Sources in the Congress said the Chief Minister agreed to fill four vacant ministerial berths following a meeting with All-India Congress Committee president Sonia Gandhi and vice-president Rahul Gandhi, along with party general secretary in-charge of Karnataka Digvijaya Singh in New Delhi.

The party high command turned down Dr. Parameshwara’s longstanding demand for the post of the Deputy Chief Minister, making it clear that the party was not interested in creating another ‘power centre’ in the State.

Dr. Parameshwara had served as the Higher Education Minister in the S.M. Krishna government. In the 2013 Assembly elections he lost to JD(S) candidate P.R. Sudhakarlal in Koratagere constituency (SC) in Tumakuru district.

A three-time MLA, Mr. Manju belongs to the Vokkaliga community while two-time MLA Mr. Kulkarni is from the Lingayat community. The Chief Minister had promised Mr. Kulkarni a Cabinet berth when he contested the Lok Sabha election in 2014. Mr Kulkarni lost to BJP State president Pralhad Joshi in Dharwad constituency. Mr. Tahasildar belongs to the OBC category.

While Dr. Parameshwara, who has completed five-years as the KPCC president, is all set to join the Cabinet, there is still no clarity on who would be heading the State unit of the party next.

Sources in the party said the high command had told the Chief Minister to continue veteran leader and Sagar MLA Kagodu Thimmappa as the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly instead of inducting him into the Cabinet.

Kagodu Thimmappa to continue as Speaker of the Legislative Assembly

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Printable version | Jan 22, 2020 5:06:38 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/no-deputy-chief-minister-post-for-parameshwara/article7816472.ece

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