To quell dissent, Cong crack team sells Cabinet dreams

To quell dissent, Cong crack team sells Cabinet dreams

The Congress high command has put together a ‘crack team‘ that is pulling out all stops to pacify disgruntled legislators, promising them an opportunity to become ministers as the party wants to fill up the remaining six Cabinet positions soon.

The outreach team comprises Deputy Chief Minister G Parameshwara, ministers R V Deshpande, K J George, D K Shivakumar, Krishna Byre Gowda and Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) working president Dinesh Gundu Rao.

Anticipating dissent, the high command deployed these six leaders to reach out to the disgruntled MLAs soon after the new ministers took oath on June 6. Since then, the team has reached out to senior leaders H K Patil, M B Patil, Satish Jarkiholi among others.

“There are six more Cabinet berths (of Congress quota) vacant and the plan is to fill them up soon. So, there will be an opportunity. This is what we’ve been telling the disgruntled MLAs,” one of the ministers told DH.

Dinesh Gundu Rao told reporters on Friday that the high command had decided to fix the term of every minister at two years. “There will be a reshuffle after two years. Also, every six months, there will be a performance review based on which the non-performers will be dropped,” he said.

M B Patil, who was the Water Resources minister in the previous government and leader of the separate Lingayat religion movement, was summoned by the Congress high command to Delhi on Friday evening. Up till Thursday night, Patil hinted that he wanted to quit the party, according to one of the ministers who was trying to pacify him. “But, we managed to put a check on that.

We told him that if he left, he’d undo all his work over the last 25 years. We told him that whatever he earned here, he’d not earn in the BJP where he will be treated like an outsider,” the minister said.  

Party veteran H K Patil has his own reasons for grieving. “He wants to know on what grounds he was left out. Specifically, his argument is that when Deshpande got in, why was he left out,” the minister said.