No scope for replacing Siddu, says KPCC chief

The demand for a dalit chief minister is a new phenomenon and it is being supported by the younger generation in the community, said State Congress president G Parameshwara.

Reacting to the demand by certain Congress leaders for a dalit chief minister, Parameshwara said on Thursday that such demand was not aired when Kharge, Basavalingappa or Ranganath was minister. “But why now? It needs to be examined. There is a general feeling that a dalit should become the chief minister,” he said.

He pointed out that Ministers Srinivas Prasad, Anjaneya, Roshan Baig and Ambareesh had in the recent past said that a dalit should become the chief minister. “But I do not know why they said that. I am aware the dalit youth want one of their own to occupy the top post,” he said.

To a question whether Siddaramaiah would be replaced, he said, “No. Siddaramaiah has the mandate to be the chief minister for five years. Right now, there is no scope for a change. Anyhow, political situations do change on a daily basis. Nobody ever thought Yeddyurappa would be stepping down as chief minister when the BJP was ruling.”

To a specific query whether the dalits were questioning the ‘dominance of the backward classes’, the Congress leader said, “There was no such demand when Devaraj Urs, Moily or Dharam Singh was heading the government. The dalits never felt ignored. But now, there’s an awakening among the dalit youth and they are raising questions.”

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