'Cong lost polls as ministers ignored party workers'

The Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee office-bearers on Thursday are understood to have taken a dig at the ministers in the Siddaramaiah government for their disinterest in interacting with party workers regularly and blamed them for not effectively publicising the achievements of the government during the recent elections.

Many of the office-bearers are learnt to have complained that they hardly get a chance to meet the ministers. This is despite direction by the party that they should frequently visit the party offices in the State.

Had the Ministers kept the party workers informed about the achievements of their departments, the party could have conducted the poll campaign more effectively, they are learnt to have said. Of the 107 office-bearers, 80 attended.

KPCC chief G Parameshwara, who chaired the office-bearers’ meeting at the KPCC main office on Queen’s Road, is learnt to have expressed helplessness on the issue. All the ministers were asked to visit Congress offices every month, but many of them were lethargic, he said.

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah did not attend the meeting as he is not an office bearer. Parameshwara told Deccan Herald that the chief minister need not attend the office bearers’ meeting as it is an internal exercise. Siddaramaiah had a series of meetings with various department heads and ministers.

Except for a few complaints of anti-party activities, the members were of the view that the party could not counter the Modi wave in the polls.

Youth strongly supported the BJP in a majority of the constituencies, leading to the Congress’ defeat, they said. There was also a strong negative feeling against the Congress which was leading the UPA government at the Centre, the members said.
The meeting, however, did not go into the constituency-wise, specific reasons for the party’s defeat.

Evaluation reports

Except for Udupi-Chikmagalur and Haveri, district party presidents of all other districts have already submitted the evaluation reports to the KPCC.

Only nine of the district incharge general secretaries have so far submitted their reports.

Parameshwara has directed the general secretaries to submit the reports in three days. He will, in turn, submit a consolidated evaluation report on the poll performance in the State at the KPCC executive committee meeting likely to be held in the middle of next month in Bangalore, to be attended by the party president and vice-president Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi, respectively.

Warning

Parameshwara is understood to have warned that strict action will be initiated against those who air their grievances in public.

His warning comes in the wake of party leader from Mandya, L R Shivarame Gowda, openly blaming candidate Ramya for the defeat.

The State Congress chief has also directed the office bearers of Bellary, Belgaum and Shimoga to recommend candidates for the byelections to the Chikodi, Bellary Rural and Shikaripura Assembly constituencies.

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