Siddaramaiah firm on resignation

 He challenged the mining magnets Reddys of the BJP in their home turf - Bellary.
He succeeded in enthusing the party workers and also firming up his position in the party. But, he has not been able to cash in on the success politically when it came to the bypolls.

Owning moral responsibility for the debacle in Kadur and Gublarga South, he has resigned as the leader of the Congress Legislature Party.

In the 16 assembly constituencies in the last 27 months. Siddaramaiah did not campaign for the party in the first set of bypolls held for eight constituencies in which party did not win a single seat.

However, the performance was no better even after his active involvement.

The party faced bypolls for seven assembly constituencies since he assumed office of the Leader of the Opposition in July, 2009. Of them the Congress could win only one seat - Govindarajanagar - that too with the JD(S) support. The party didn’t win the bypoll to Gundlupet whee Siddaramaiah claimed to have good support.

Here are excerpts from his interaction with media on Thursday.

What prompted your decision to quit?

I had totally involved in the campaign. Particularly in Kadur, I stayed for seven days, travelled across the constituency and interacted with the voters. After the results, I felt I should own moral responsibility for the defeat.

Do you withdraw your resignation if your supporters and high command insist?

This is my instant reaction to the results. I have not resigned to please anybody or to withdraw it if somebody insists on it. This is my conscious decision.

Why only you should take moral responsibility?

I took the decision on my own. I did not discuss it with anybody. I can speak only about my decision.

What went wrong in the elections?

There are many reasons for the defeat. The BJP leaders offered cash and liquor to lure the voters. They misused the office machinery and divided voters on caste lines.

Don’t you think differences among the Congress leaders is also one of the reasons for the defeat.

One thing is clear, we have failed to secure voters’ support as the BJP did. I will discuss the reasons in the party forum.

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