H K Patil likely to be next KPCC prez

H K Patil likely to be next KPCC prez

HK Patil

Senior Congress leader H K Patil is likely to be made as Karnataka Pradesh Congress president as party national president Rahul Gandhi is keen on giving representation to North Karnataka.

Though incumbent working president Dinesh Gundu Rao, former minister T B Jayachandra, former union minister K H Muniyappa, Rajya Sabha member B K Hariprasad and Irrigation Minister D K Shivakumar are lobbying for the post, it is learnt that the party top brass is favouring Patil for the post, considering he is acceptable to all sections within the party, said sources.

The new leader will take over as the party chief from Deputy Chief Minister G Parameshwara.

Patil, who was sulking after denial of ministership in the JD(S)-Congress coalition government, is learnt to have shown an inclination to take party responsibility and also, has the backing of most of the senior leaders from the state. 

Patil recently met Rahul Gandhi and other senior leaders in the national capital and discussed the political situation in the state. 

Though Shivakumar and T B Jayachandra are trying hard for the post, several Vokkaliga leaders are opposed to them. 

According to sources, Rahul offered the post to former irrigation minister and Lingayat leader M B Patil, but he was keen on becoming a minister in the Kumaraswamy Cabinet. But Rahul is not keen on appointing any Lok Sabha or Rajya Sabha members for the post.

Though Rahul earlier favoured young faces including Dinesh Gundu Rao or Krishna Byre Gowda or former minister Ishwar Khandre, several state leaders urged him to appoint only a senior leader for the key post, who can control party MLAs instead of juniors.

As the Congress has already decided to go in for an alliance with the Janata Dal (Secular) in the next Lok Sabha polls, the party needs a strong leader to bargain hard with the coalition partner.

Besides, the KPCC chief will have to ensure proper implementation of the common minimum programme, said the leader.

“The KPCC president should be a strong leader as he has to deal with the Janata Dal (Secular) on every issue in the coalition government,” said a leader.