The face-off between Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and state Congress president G Parameshwara has finally come to an end with the latter being made a minister in a long overdue cabinet expansion.
Four new ministers inclduing state Congress chief G Parameshwara are likely to be inducted into the cabinet on Thursday. After seeing multiple postponements, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Wednesday, announced that four ministers would likely be inducted into the cabinet on Thursday. However, the party has not made the names official.
The state cabinet cannot have more than 10 percent of the total strength of the assembly. Governor Vajubhai Vala will administer the oath at 4.30 pm.
Although the partyâ€™s national leadership has approved of Parameshwara jjoining the cabinet it has clearly decided against making him deputy chief minister.
Reacting to the development, Parameshwara told Suvarna News, â€śIt is true that I had wanted the post of deputy chief minister, but I must accept the decision of senior leaders. So I will join the cabinet as a minister.â€ť
Congress chief Sonia Gandhi herself convinced Parameshwara to join the cabinet as a minister when they met on Wednesday morning, The New Indian Express reported. There is speculation that he may be given the Home portfolio which is currently held by KJ George, however, there is no confirmation on this.
Parameshwara also said that he was not disappointed that he was not made deputy chief minister. â€śIn the present circumstances, it was necessary to accept the post of a minister. My supporters are disappointed that I was not made DCM. Along with this, the chapter for a Dalit CM has also been closed,â€ť Parameshwara told Suvarna News.
The other three names doing the rounds are A Manju of Arkalgud, Vinay Kulkarni of Dharwad and Manohar Tahsildar of Hanagal.
There was speculation that Tahsildarâ€™s name could be dropped from the list at the last minute,. The reason being that Siddaramaiah wanted to include Bagalkot MLA HY Meti, who is a Kuruba and who stood behind him during bad times. However by Thursday afternoon, sources confirmed that Meti is unlikely to be inducted.
The express also reported that the Manju was being included to as a counter to JD (S) chief HD Deve Gowdaâ€™s clout in the Hassan region. Kulkarniâ€™s inclusion however, is aimed at countering the influence of partyâ€™s own leader HK Patil in the undivided Dharwad region.
Although Siddaramaiah is finally going in for a cabinet expansion, not every body will be satisfied. To placate these disgruntled party leaders, Siddaramaiah has reportedly obtained permission from the party high command to recruit betweent eight and 10 of them as parliamentary secretaries and one person as his political secretary.