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Cong Dalit leaders in K’taka hold dinner meet, press for more DyCM posts

Bengaluru : Amid the all-out attack from BJP over the arrest of a Kar Sevak, the Congress government’s infighting has come to the fore in Karnataka with prominent Dalit leaders meeting here and pressing for the creation of more Deputy Chief Minister posts.

The meeting was held at the residence of Minister for PWD and prominent Dalit leader Satish Jarkiholi. Minister for Home Dr. G. Parameshwar, Minister for Social Welfare Dr. H.C. Mahadevappa, Minister for Food K.H. Muniyappa and Minister for Cooperation K.N. Rajanna, all identifying with Chief Minister Siddaramaiah camp, attended the meeting after a dinner party.

Sources said that the meeting was held to strategize to tame DyCM D.K. Shivakumar, who is eyeing the CM’s post. CM Siddaramaiah tactfully brought the matter of creation of more DyCM’s to the forefront through his loyalists. The move has compelled Shivakumar to do the firefighting to save his present position.

The meeting was held till late in the night on Thursday, and sources said that the leaders decided to place the demand before the high command over the creation of two more DyCM posts and giving one of it to the Dalit community.

Minister Jarkiholi has already placed the demand for three DyCM posts before the high command during his trip to New Delhi. He had stated that in the wake of upcoming Lok Sabha elections, he had discussed making Dalit and minority leaders DyCM’s.

Jarkiholi had further said that he had also brought to the notice of the top leadership the demand of his supporters and religious pontiffs that he should get the DyCM post.

Minister Rajanna said that Siddaramaiah was going to remain the CM for the full term, and batted for the creation of three DyCM’s posts.

The demand by CM Siddaramaiah’s camp is that if at all there is a change of guard in Karnataka, the CM’s post should be given to a Dalit leader. This has made things more complicated for Shivakumar.

Shivakumar, the go-getter for the Congress high command is focussing on consolidating his position and making careful moves. His camp has been maintaining that he is going to be the CM for the last 2.5 years term in Karnataka.

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