Debacle aside, Siddaramaiah unshakeable

Siddaramaiah said the vacant ministerial berths will be filled first.

Bengaluru: Giving enough indications that he continues to call the shots in the state Congress and enjoys the confidence of the high command despite several senior leaders 'ganging up' against him post the Lok Sabha debacle, Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leader Siddaramiaah on Wednesday made it categorically clear that there was no immediate cabinet reshuffle on the cards with only the filling of vacant cabinet slots being planned.

Siddaramaiah's statement came a day after the 'cool head' in the Congress and veteran leader R Ramalinga Reddy vent his anger on twitter against the sidelining of senior leaders during the recent Lok Sabha polls indirectly targeting Siddaramaiah and his loyalists. Though the former CM did try to assuage his feelings saying the BTM Layout MLA would get an opportunity to serve as a minister during the next reshuffle, Reddy does not seem to stand a chance now with the JD(S)-Congress coalition reaching a consensus on first filling three vacant cabinet posts-two of JD(S) and one of Congress-and then going for a reshuffle.

"I will speak to Ramalinga Reddy... I had told him that he will be made minister during the reshuffle. Now we are not carrying out a reshuffle," Siddaramaiah told reporters.

"We have decided to fill one post that is vacant (from the Congress share of ministerial berths) due to former minister C.S. Shivalli's death," he added making it more than clear that the vacant slot was not meant for Reddy.

Meanwhile, Congress leader H.K. Patil tried to play the peacemaker's role demanding that the high command convene a meeting of senior leaders who had been airing their grievances in public, referring to the critical statements of Ramalinga Reddy and another former minister, Roshan Baig. It's time party president Rahul Gandhi took note of the crisis and resolved it through talks, he said adding that the current situation calls for everyone to unite to strengthen the party.

When contacted, Mr Reddy told Deccan Chronicle that none of the Congress leaders have contacted him, after his outburst adding that minister Zameer Ahmed Khan did meet him. "I spoke from my conscience. I don't have any political ambitions as I am a seven-time MLA. My only objection is to the neglect of senior legislators and preferential treatment for newcomers" he said.

Next Story