The Congress Legislature Party (CLP) meeting in Bengaluru turned out to be a platform where the party's MLAs expressed their anger against the ruling Congress-JD(S) coalition government in the state.
The meeting was convened by former chief minister and head of the coalition coordination committee Siddaramaiah, against the backdrop of news that several Congress MLAs including MTB Nagaraj from Hoskote, B Sudhakar from Chikballapur, Anand Singh from Ballari and Ramesh Jarkiholi from Gokak, were threatening to revolt against the party's hierarchy.
The meeting was attended by all Congress legislators in the state barring Speaker KR Ramesh Kumar and Shivajinagar MLA Roshan Baig, who had both taken prior permission to skip the meeting.
It is learnt that ST Somashekar, MLA from Yeshwanthpur, vented his ire against Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy, particularly over his preference for a firm from Ramanagar district while granting permission for mining activities.
Somashekar, Sudhakar and Hebbal MLA Byarthi Suresh raised the issue of favouritism in funds allocated for developing constituencies. The leaders urged the Congress party hierarchy to take more control of the activities of the government. The legislators further pointed fingers at Deputy Chief Minister G Parameshwara accusing him of not doing anything to protect the party's interests.
"There are no differences in the Congress party. There are some MLAs who want to become ministers. There is nothing wrong about it. But none of the MLAs are with BJP, that is clear from the outset. If the BJP had some MLAs who would support them, they would have contested the MLC elections but we can see that they have withdrawn from the fight", said Congress legislator Zameer Ahmed Khan, while speaking on the sidelines of the meeting.
Meanwhile, Siddaramaiah reiterated to his party's legislators to resist attempts of the opposition BJP to switch allegiances and to not take decisions in haste. He further added that Congress President Rahul Gandhi had asked the party to keep the coalition government in power in the state.