Karnataka

Six Ministers from Belagavi district?

Six leaders from Belagavi may find place in the State Cabinet, if the promises said to have been made by the BJP are strictly kept.

The BJP already has two leaders from the border district — Shashikala Jolle and Laxman Savadi — in the ministry. Three disqualified MLAs — Ramesh Jarkiholi, Mahesh Kumathalli and Shrimant Patil — are now additional aspirants. Besides, senior leader Umesh Katti is a strong contender too.

Sources in the BJP said the party would consider all aspects before appointing leaders as Ministers. “Seniors in the party have openly admitted that the formation of the BJP government was possible due to the support of Ramesh Jarkiholi and his followers. His place in the Cabinet is fixed,” said a member of the BJP State executive committee. “He has been desirous of the Water Resources Ministry and that may go to him. However, allotment of portfolios may not be as easy,” he said.

“Among the other two leaders, the case of Mr. Patil is strong as he is the only Maratha Kshatriya to have won on BJP ticket.

Mr. Katti, a nine-time MLA, is said to have used his clout to campaign for the leaders in Gokak, Athani and Kagwad, the three seats that went to bypolls. His efforts in the campaign may be rewarded too,” another BJP leader said. The only doubt party insiders express is about the entry of Mr. Kumathalli, another Lingayat leader, into the council of ministers. He may be accommodated in a corporation or board that has State-wide appeal, said a party MLC.

“This is the first time the district will have as many Ministers. The highest we had in the past was three,” said Ashok Chandargi, a political observer.

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Printable version | Feb 29, 2020 9:32:20 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/six-ministers-from-belagavi-district/article30279618.ece

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