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Congress high command to hold two meetings over dissent in Karnataka unit, focus on changing govt’s negative image

Congress high command has decided to convene two meetings in New Delhi on the 2nd of August to discuss issues of the Karnataka unit

Amid allegations of corruption, bickering camps, and growing dissent within the party, Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah was forced to call for a Congress Legislature Party (CLP) meeting on Thursday, 27 July. The aim of the CLP was to address the concerns of the dissenting members and restore harmony within the party. However, it remained inconclusive and failed to arrive at any amicable solutions which alarmed the party’s high command in Delhi. 

In the wake of these developments, the Congress high command has decided to convene two meetings in New Delhi on the 2nd of August to discuss issues of the Karnataka unit. Several party members, while some maintaining anonymity, claimed that the focus of these meetings will be to quell dissent within the party and change the negative image of its state government. They also added that the recent statement made by senior leader BK Hariprasad during the earlier meetings could also be discussed in the meeting by the central leadership.  

Congress MLA from Anand, BR Patil highlighted that the conduct of some ministers had earned a bad image for the state government. For those unversed, he had earlier written a letter to CM Siddaramaiah urging him to call a CLP meeting. The letter was also signed by 30 other party MLAs. 

Patil said, “We are happy that the party leadership responded to our concerns. While it is important to build a good public perception of the government, the conduct of a few ministers, as we observed, could be bad optics for the government. And that would have put us in a difficult situation ahead of the Lok Sabha polls. We are happy that we alerted the party before the situation got out of hand.”

A Congress officer-bearer informed PTI that only senior leaders of the party will take part in the first meeting.  

According to the Congress leader, party president Mallikarjun Kharge, former Congress president Rahul Gandhi, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, Deputy Chief Minister and state Congress president D K Shivakumar, Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister H K Patil, general secretaries K C Venugopal and Randeep Singh Surjewala, who is also the Karnataka in-charge and some other top functionaries will take part in the first meeting. 

The office-bearer further mentioned that the Congress ministers will participate in the second meeting, and there is a possibility of some senior party MLAs joining as well.

Several MLAs and party workers in Karnataka Congress have claimed that the Congress Ministers are inaccessible. Their discontent also stems from the fact that Deputy Chief Minister Shivakumar categorically told them that there will be no development projects this year. He claimed that on account of allocating Rs 60,000 crore annually for fulfilling five guarantees, the state government has a shortage of funds for development. 

State Home Minister targets the disgruntled party MLAs

Despite these claims from supporters of one camp, state Home Minister Dr. Parameshwara denied that there were any dissenting remarks during the CLP meeting. Contrarily, he targeted those MLAs who had written a letter to the Chief Minister claiming that Siddaramaiah himself told these MLAs that writing a letter was inappropriate and this trend should discontinue. 

Parameshwara said, “A few MLAs had written to the Chief Minister saying that he has to convene a meeting of the legislative party members. The Chief Minister said if you had told me orally, I would have convened the meeting. He requested that the convention of writing letters should not be continued in the future.” 

According to reports, a senior Congress leader claimed that these developments are causing embarrassment for the party and that central leadership should discipline them. 

The leader said, “The recent developments have been causing severe embarrassment to the party. Our leaders and the party high command will warn them and bring discipline in the party.”  

Another Congress insider said, “These MLAs had also carried out a signature campaign which the party leaders did not appreciate. Even Chief Minister Siddaramaiah admonished them during the CLP meeting not to resort to such tactics as it brings a bad name to the government.”

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will also interact with Karnataka MPs on August 2. Reportedly, between the 31st of July and the 10th of August, PM Modi will interact with more than 400 MPs of the NDA in Delhi.

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staff
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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