Cong anxious as eight MLAs skip crucial CLP meeting

KPCC working president Eshwar Khandre, Deputy Chief Minister G Parameshwara, former chief minister Siddaramaiah, AICC general secretary and Karnataka in-charge K C Venugopal, Karnataka Congress President Dinesh Gundu Rao and various other party leaders du

Eight legislators skipped the Congress Legislature Party (CLP) meeting held on Tuesday, over and above 12 of them who have already resigned, which has furthered the party’s anxiety during the ongoing crisis. 

Tuesday’s CLP meet was crucial as the party wanted to use the platform to take stock of its flock and get their MLAs to pledge their support ahead of the monsoon session of the Legislature that starts on July 12. 

Among those who skipped the CLP meet are names that are speculated to resign. 

Totally, 20 MLAs abstained from participating in the meet. Of them, 11 have already tendered their resignation and Independent R Shankar has withdrawn support to the ruling coalition. Of the other 8, seven had obtained permission citing poor health among others reasons. Dr Anjali Nimbalkar, K Sudhakar, M T B Nagaraj, T D Rajegowda, S Ramappa, Shamanur Shivashankarappa, E Tukaram and Kaneez Fathima did not attend the CLP meet. 

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The party has 79 MLAs, including the Speaker. Of them, 11 have tendered their resignation - Ramalinga Reddy, S T Somashekhar, Muniratna, B A Basavaraj, B C Patil, Ramesh Jarkiholi, Pratapgouda Patil, Shivaram Hebbar, Mahesh Kumathalli, Anand Singh and R Roshan Baig. If their resignation is accepted, the Congress will be down to 68. 

The party was hoping senior leader Ramalinga Reddy would show up, but he did not. 

Reddy’s daughter Sowmya Reddy, who represents Jayanagar, came but has kept the party on tenterhooks on her next move. “I’ll have to ask my supports, voters and of course, my father and think about it,” she told reporters on whether she would resign. “Everybody knows why my father has resigned. He’s been a staunch Congressman and has built the party from scratch for the past 45 years. It’s unfair and it’s been painful (for him),” she added. 

Shantinagar legislator N A Haris, who is planning to go overseas to attend his child’s graduation ceremony, was told clearly to be sure he attended the first two days of the legislature session on July 12-13, and when the Finance Bill is tabled.

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