Amid crisis, Cong leaders come together to show unity

Amid crisis, Cong leaders come together to show unity

The show of unity came at a time when the Congress is in the midst of a leadership crisis, with Siddaramaiah and Rao having tendered resignation to their respective positions owning moral responsibility for the party’s poor performance in the recent bypolls. Photo/Twitter (@INCKarnataka)

Top Congress leaders huddled together Saturday in what was a show of unity in a party riddled with factions and groups. 

Former deputy chief minister G Parameshwara hosted over a dozen senior party leaders at his Sadashiva Nagar residence. This was a task he was given by the party high command - to bring everyone together and resolve differences.  

Leader of the Opposition Siddaramaiah, senior leader Mallikarjun Kharge, Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president Dinesh Gundu Rao, former Union ministers KH Muniyappa, K Rahman Khan, Rajya Sabha MP BK Hariprasad among others attended the meeting. 

The show of unity came at a time when the Congress is in the midst of a leadership crisis, with Siddaramaiah and Rao having tendered resignation to their respective positions owning moral responsibility for the party’s poor performance in the recent bypolls. The resignations emboldened the factions, especially the one comprising leaders who are against Siddaramaiah. 

“Of late, there were differing reports appearing in the media about the party. We needed to show that we're together,” Parameshwara told reporters after the meeting that lasted nearly three hours. 

The unanimous opinion was that the party high command should take a decision soon on the resignations tendered by Siddaramaiah and Rao. “The way forward for the party will depend on who the party president and Congress Legislature Party leader is,” Parameshwara said, adding that confusion on the fate of the two posts will have a bearing on the strengthening the party’s organisation and appointment of office-bearers. 

Parameswara also said that the leaders did not discuss who should be appointed for the two posts. “The posts of the party president and CLP leader are the most important. We need to strengthen the party’s organisation as elections can happen anytime, although they are over three years away. Plus, the panchayat and BBMP elections are coming up. So, we’ve decided to convey all of this to the party high command,” he said. 

Several leaders are said to be lobbying to become the next KPCC president, whereas one section within the party has argued that the posts of CLP leader and LoP, currently held by one person, must be separated like in Maharashtra. 

Parameshwara, who is seen as Siddaramaiah's bete noire, is said to be in the race to become the CLP leader. “Let’s not get into personal aspirations. We didn’t discuss that at all,” he said.

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