Karnataka Congress Legislature Party to convene meeting on 29 May

Bengaluru: Congress Legislature Party leader Siddaramaiah issued a letter to party legislators announcing that a meeting would be held at a hotel in the city on 29 May to discuss the current political developments in the State.

The note further said that all MLAs should be present at the meeting without fail and give their valuable suggestions.

This comes amid poor performance by the coalition partners in the recently held Lok Sabha elections and due to discontent between the coalition partners – Congress and Janata Dal Secular.

While the Congress party won just one out of 21 seats, JD(S) also won just one out of the seven seats it had fought. JDS supremo H D Deve Gowda, veteran Congress leaders Mallikarjun Kharge, Veerappa Moily, K H Muniyappa were among others who were defeated. The BJP won 25 of the 28 seats and this is expected to have an adverse effect on the stability of the Kumaraswamy government.

The meeting also comes in the wake of simmering discontent within the party, with party MLA Ramesh Jarkiholi, who has been hobnobbing with the BJP for some time, even threatening to resign along with a few MLAs after the LS polls polls. Adding to this was senior party legislator Roshan Baigs outburst against the leadership, holding them responsible for the poor show by the party.

It is said that Deputy Chief Minister G Parameshwara, Pradesh Congress President Dinesh Gundu Rao would also be present for the meeting. According to media reports, the party legislators are expected to put forth their opinion on the coalition and the way forward. Also the party has decided to go ahead with the alliance and may even seek changes or reshuffle in the ministry.

The Legislators may also seek proper coordination with the government, and the Chief Minister’s intervention to resolve some of their constituency and governance related issue on priority, the sources said, adding that they may also ask for a joint legislature meeting of both parties. The leadership is also expected to explain to MLAs about the need to continue with the coalition and ask them not to make any public statements against the alliance.

There is also the possibility of discussions on some Ministers quitting from their posts to make way for others to quell the growing discontent, the sources added. It also remains to be seen whether the disgruntled MLAs would attend the CLP meeting. If not, it will once again trigger speculation about the numbers game.

NT Bureau