Decision on Cabinet reshuffle today: CM

Decision on Cabinet reshuffle today: CM

Decision on Cabinet reshuffle today: CM
Chief Minister Siddaramaiah’s plans to reshuffle his Cabinet apparently ran into rough weather on Friday.

Congress president Sonia Gandhi suggested Siddaramaiah go in for another round of talks with senior party leaders from Karnataka.

The leaders, including Congress floor leader in the Lok Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge and former Union minister Oscar Fernandes, are learnt to have conveyed their reservation over Siddaramaiah’s list of new names, saying he had not held wide consultations within the party as desired by the high command.

They also disapproved of the chief minister holding a meeting of his Council of Ministers in Bengaluru on Wednesday, where he announced that the reshuffle would took place.

Siddaramaiah, who met Sonia Gandhi on Friday, was told to meet her again on Saturday after talking to other leaders. The chief minister, who sounded confident of getting the high command’s approval for reshuffle on Saturday itself, cancelled his engagements for Sunday. He asked the state Chief Secretary’s Office to be ready for a swearing-in ceremony on Sunday morning.

However, Congress sources said Siddaramaiah could not make much headway in finalising the list of ministers to be dropped and a similar number of new faces to be inducted into the Cabinet on Friday, despite two days of discussions with several leaders.

The objection came from other state leaders who held that the list prepared by the chief minister “lacked” regional and caste balance. When the chief minister, along with Karnataka Congress unit chief G Parameshwara and AICC general secretary Digvijaya Singh, met Sonia to get the list approved, she reportedly asked them to hold further consultation with other senior leaders before finalising the names. Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi was also present.

“It was a preliminary discussion. The discussion remained inconclusive. Madam has called us on Saturday at 10 am to further discuss the issue,” Siddaramaiah told reporters after the meeting.

Asked about the number of ministers to be dropped from the Cabinet and whether the appointment of a new KPCC president was discussed in the meeting, he merely said, “All issues were discussed. It will be discussed again tomorrow in detail.”