Bengaluru: Amid reports of disgruntled party leaders walking out of the coalition in Karnataka, senior Congress leader DK Shivakumar said on Monday, “I don’t say it’s wrong to make demands. Even I wanted to be a part of CM Dharam Singh’s Cabinet but I was quiet as I understood the situation. Even during Siddaramaiah’s term, I became minister later… I request my friends to not worry.” (Also read: Karnataka Temple Tragedy: Prasad Was Poisoned For Control Over Shrine)
State unit chief of Congress Dinesh Gundu Rao addressed media and said, “Every Cabinet expansion and reshuffle will have some repercussion. For a few days, there’ll be some emotional outbursts but everything will be resolved. We’ve put a lot of thought in the process.”
He added, “North Karnataka had to be compensated because in the first formation, there were fewer ministers from there. Today, we’ve done justice to them. In this exercise, some seniors will get left out because of permutations and combinations.”
Earlier in the day, some channels were reporting how Ramesh Jarkiholi, who had been dropped from the Cabinet, had threatened to resign as an MLA.
An audio clip of Jarkiholi, a five-time legislator from Gokak, saying the same had gone viral. The clip showed him mentioning he wasn’t sure how many MLAs would be with him.
“I may quit in the next few days or it may take a week or two. But anyway I have decided to quit,” the clip shows Jarkiholi as saying. Party leader Siddaramaiah said he will reach out to Jarkiholi.
After staying confined to his house on Saturday, Jarkiholi is said to have left for Bengaluru on Sunday to join a group of disgruntled party legislators from Belagavi, Ballari and Raichur.
Reports suggested that two Congress MLAs from Belagavi and five to six-party legislators from Ballari, Raichur and Koppal may hold meetings in Bengaluru over the next few days before quitting as MLAs.
The group has been preparing to quit for the past three months, said reports. Jarkiholi has reportedly been meeting BJP leaders secretively.
Reacting, Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy said, “Political developments, disillusionment and some expectations occur, I will try to talk to everyone. They’re all capable leaders, but they are disappointed with the expansion of Cabinet, Congress party will correct it.”