Amidst threats by Karnataka chief minister HD Kumaraswamy of resigning if the clamour for Siddaramaiah was not reigned in, on Wednesday, the former chief minister along with the Pradesh Congress Committee chief, Dinesh Gundu Rao met with Rahul Gandhi and KC Venugopal, AICC in-charge of Karnataka.
Siddaramaiah was firmly instructed to bridle his loyalists who have, in a series, extolled Siddaramaiah and have gone on to state that he was still the chief minister for them, causing much discomfiture to Kumaraswamy.
But the Congress leaders too had prepared a list of charges against the JDS leadership, especially the chief minister, to advocate their stand of discrimination against Congressmen.
1. The schemes of the previous govt, common minimum programs not being adhered to
State Congress leaders have informed Rahul Gandhi that the pro-poor, pro-backward class schemes that were the flagship programs of the Congress government are not being implemented anymore. The Common Minimum Program (CMP) that the coordination committee had formulated is not being conformed to by the HDK-led government. Any deviation from the same can be perceived as a betrayal of the coalition Dharma, Siddaramaiah is reported to have told Rahul Gandhi.
2. Congress ministers, MLAs being blatantly snubbed by HDK
The Congress legislators have not been granted an audience with HDK for months and even the ministers are being meted out step-motherly treatment, Siddaramaiah has alleged. Officials in the departments of Congress ministers are being transferred without their assent, whimsically by the chief minister.
3. Congress MLAs from Bengaluru not consulted over development schemes
The Congress party won 15 of 28 Bengaluru city constituencies and the JDS won just 2. Despite that, the accusation is that the chief minister is unilaterally deciding and announcing projects for the city development, like the ambitious elevated corridor, without confabulating with the Congress MLAs.
4. Statements of JDS leaders on TV channels against Congress leaders especially Siddaramaiah pernicious
Many JDS leaders including their state president H Vishwanath have publicly derided Siddaramaiah for not letting go of the grip he has over the government, resulting in multiple power centres. These statements, calling him a ‘super-CM” is calamitous for the Congress party, the leaders have told Rahul Gandhi.
5. HDK’s repeated threats of resignation detrimental for LS polls
Kumaraswamy has made a habit of public display of emotions and his multiple outbursts include the latest threat to resign if Congress leaders don't stop questioning his leadership. In the upcoming Lok Sabha polls, while the two parties have collaborated upon a pre-poll alliance, campaigning will be tenacious if these threats continue.
The ruling coalition in Karnataka has been unsettled from day-one but with direct threats of resignation, the JDS has issued a final warning. But strongmen in Congress will not go down without a fight to assert their own dominance.