Bengaluru: It looks like incumbent Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president, Dr G. Parameshwar will create a record of sorts in the history of the state Congress-he will be the first PCC president to be at the helm of affairs for two consecutive Assembly elections – 2013 as well as 2018.
It is reliably learnt that Dr Parameshwar may be asked to continue to hold high the party flag even during the 2018 Assembly polls though Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and his loyalists have been making frenetic attempts to replace Dr Parameshwar with their man ahead of the Assembly elections.
The old adage — one man's loss is another man's gain — aptly suits Dr Parameshwar too. Had veteran Dalit leader, V. Sreenivas Prasad not resigned from the Congress party and his MLA seat, the Chief Minister’s camp would have aggressively chalked out a strategy to get Dr Parameshwar replaced soon after he completed his six-year term last month.
Speaking to Deccan Chronicle, a senior leader from New Delhi observed that it was almost certain Dr Parameshwar would be replaced soon after he completed six years as Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee president but the situation has now changed.
“Although the Chief Minister and his camp followers are bent on replacing Dr Parameshwar and even Energy Minister D.K. Shivakumar has thrown his hat in the ring, a large section of central leadersof the party are in favour of Dr Parameshwar’s continuation till the next Assembly elections.
There is a strong feeling among leaders in Delhi that it would be disastrous if the new Pradesh Congress Committee president takes over ahead of the Nanjangud by-poll as the Congress candidate will have to take on Dalit veteran V. Srinivas Prasad. If Dr Parameshwar, also a Dalit leader, is replaced now, it will give Mr Prasad another campaign issue in his constituency. Senior leaders feel that retaining Dr Parameshwar in the KPCC post is the ideal option instead of replacing him with anyone else at this juncture,” the source explained.
The source added that though Dr Parameshwar holds the record as the longest serving Karnataka state Congress president, the record in South India would go to Ramesh Chennithala of Kerala who not only remained Pradesh Congress Committee president for more than seven and half years but also holds the record of facing the Assembly elections as PCC chief of that state for two consecutive terms. “If Dr Parameshwar is allowed to remain at the helm of party affairs in Karnataka, he will surely surpass Mr Chennitala’s record,” the source explained....