I can't be receiving caste delegations, Sonia tells Rani

I can't be receiving caste delegations, Sonia tells Rani

Congress leader Rani Satish, who took up the cause of Lingayats’ pent up ire against KPCC President G Parameshwara with the party high command in New Delhi, said that party chief Sonia Gandhi made it clear that it would not be proper for her to receive caste delegations.

Rani Satish, when contacted by Deccan Herald on Thursday, “Firstly, she was very busy. Secondly, she said that it would not be proper for her to receive caste delegations like ours, as it would compel her to meet delegations led by leaders of other castes. Hence she asked me to brief her political secretary,” she said.

Rani Satish said that it was imperative for the party to change the leadership in the State, as it would be the “best strategy” to adopt before the elections.

“We have nothing against Parameshwara. But, we need to address the fact that many Lingayat leaders have defected to BJP, which has impacted the party adversely. Further there is no proper Lingayat representation at both the national and State level. Another factor that the party can cash is on is the fact the Lingayat religious leaders are not comfortable with former chief minister B S Yeddyurappa calling the shots,” she said.

Rani Satish, former minister and KPCC vice-president, was the only member of the Lingayat delegation that was allowed to meet Sonia in New Delhi two days ago.
The AICC chief, who did not receive even a memorandum from the delegation which had nearly 40 members, asked them to meet Ahmed Patel, her political secretary.
Congress MLA P M Ashok said that talks with Patel had been successful.

“I am hundred per cent sure that our demand will be met. We have no issues even if Parameshwara is made the chief minister. But there should be a representation to Lingayat at the party level.”

It is learnt that the Lingayat leaders said if the High Command failed to yield to their demand, the leaders have decided to press for bringing either CLP leader Siddaramaiah or Union Labour Minister Mallikarjun Kharge in as the KPCC president. A second “smaller” and “non-Lingayat” delegation is said to go to Delhi in another ten days and meet with senior working committee members including Gulam Nabi Azad and Janardhan Dwivedi.

“Not rattled”

When contacted, Parameshwara said that he could initiate disciplinary action against party men indulging in this kind of an anti party activity, but he would not. Instead, he would take them into confidence, he said.

But, beyond that they still want to form an opinion, its up to them. There may be certain shortcomings, but that’s not the reason to demand for a change in leadership, he said.