Digivijaya removed as Congress in-charge of Goa, Karnataka

Digivijaya removed as Congress in-charge of Goa, Karnataka

In a big shakeup, AICC General Secretary Digvijaya Singh on Saturday was divested of charge of Karnataka and Goa. In his place, former Union Minister K C Venugopal has taken the charge of Karnataka as new AICC General Secretary, and is tasked with winning the next assembly elections in 2018.
 
As for Goa, where Digvijaya's handling of the recent elections and subsequent developments had come under severe criticism from within the party, AICC Secretary A Chellakumar was given the charge.
 
Besides Venugopal, Congress President Sonia Gandhi appointed four AICC Secretaries to supervise election preparations in Karnataka. They are former Telangana MP Madhu Yashki Goud, former Tamil Nadu MP Manickam Tagore, P C Vishnunadh and former Andhra minister Sake Sailajanath.
 
These appointments, according to AICC sources, signalled a strong message to the rank and file in the Karnataka to gear up for the state polls, which “would have to be won at all costs.”
 
Venugopal, a Lok Sabha member from Alappuzha Parliamentary seat in Kerala, is among the most visible faces of the Congress in the lower house.
 
Sources said Digvijaya will continue to be AICC General Secretary in-charge of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.
 
Congress had emerged as the single-largest party in Goa in the February elections but could not form the government as BJP walked away with its pre-poll allies.
 
These changes come at a time the party has been buoyed by the bypoll results of two seats – Nanjangud and Gundlupet which has strengthened Chief Minister Siddaramaiah's hands ahead of the assembly elections next year.
 
In Goa, Chellakumar will be assisted by Amit Deshmukh, the son of former Maharashtra Chief Minister late Vilasrao Deshmukh. Interestingly, Chellakumar was Digvijaya's deputy in Goa and Karnataka.
 
AICC General Secretary Madhusudhan Mistry was also dropped from the post as he was made member of the Central Organisational Election Authority with Mullapally Ramachandran as its Chairman.
 
AICC General Secretary Janardan Dwivedi made it clear that since Mistry had become member of the Central Election Authority, he will not hold any organisational post as per party constitution.
 
The new appointments indicate Rahul's team put in key posts ahead of the much anticipated transition of power in the Congress.
 
The new team will have to take a call on whether a new Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee President has to be appointed in place of Home Minister G Parmeshwara.
 
Another challenge for the team would be to pick up winning candidates in the Karnataka and help Congress make a comeback since its string of lossess after the Lok Sabha elections of 2014.
 
Earlier this week, Ashok Gehlot was appointed as AICC General Secretary and given the charge of poll-bound Gujarat. He replaced AICC General Secretary Gurudas Kamat.

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