Congress: Siddaramaiah in Delhi, DK Shivakumar falls behind amid brawl over Karnataka Post CM: Major Developments

NEW DELHI: Siddaramaia or DK Shivakumar? The suspense about CongressThe choice of chief minister for Karnataka continued on Monday with the action now moving to Delhi, where the party’s high command is expected to make the final decision on the matter.
Since the Congress’s emphatic victory in the May 10 assembly polls, there has been intense lobbying for the post of prime minister for former CM Siddaramaiah and KPCC chairman DK Shivakumar.
Congress hopes to avoid a repeat of what happened in Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan in 2018, where the fight for the top position subsequently led to political crises.
Here is a summary of the day’s developments…
Siddaramaiah in Delhi for consultations
Congress leader Siddaramaiah arrived in the national capital on Monday afternoon where he is likely to meet top party leaders ahead of the decision on Karnataka’s next prime minister.
According to sources, Siddaramaiah, 75, had flown from Bangalore on a special flight to meet with senior officials, a day after newly elected Congress lawmakers cleared party chairman Mallikarjun Kharge to decide on the CM choice.
After his arrival in Delhi, Siddaramiah did not interact with reporters.
DK Shivakumar cancels visit to Delhi
Shivakumar, who earlier in the day said he was heading to the national capital, later told reporters he would not travel to Delhi due to a “stomach infection”.
The head of the state congress said he left the decision on choosing the CM to the party’s high command.
However, Shivakumar asserted himself when asked about his prospects, saying his strength is 135, as under his presidency, the party won the aforementioned number of seats in assembly polls.
“We had made a one-line resolution, stating that we will leave the matter to the party high command, after some may have shared their personal opinion. I don’t have the strength to talk about other people’s numbers, my strength is 135, I am the chairman of the party and under my chairmanship, the party won 135 seats in Karnataka, against the dual engine government (BJP), the corrupt administration and the suffering of the people.The people supported us and made us win 135 seats,” Shivakumar said.
Central Observers meet Kharge in Delhi
After holding discussions with newly elected Congress MLAs in Bengaluru, the party’s three central observers met with Kharge on Monday evening and held deliberations on government formation in Karnataka.
Sushilkumar Shinde, Jitendra Singh and Deepak Babaria met with Kharge along with Secretary General (Organisation) KC Venugopal and Acting Secretary General for Karnataka Randeep Surjewala.
The six top leaders discussed the observer report and the views of newly elected MLAs elicited by the three during face-to-face interactions with new lawmakers held in Bangalore late Sunday evening.
Sources said the observers briefed the Congress president on the MLAs’ views on the new prime minister and government formation in Karnataka.
Decision soon, says Congress
Today, Congress Leader and Karnataka Chief Randeep Surjewala said that the observers will present their report regarding the upcoming CM to President Kharge tonight.
He said that following this, new government will be formed very soon in the state.
“Two resolutions were passed on Sunday. One was to thank the people for giving the mandate. The other resolution empowered party chairman Mallikarjun Kharge to make the choice of Congress legislative party leader,” he said.
He said the three observers had discussions with each individual MLA about the desired situation in the state and the type of leadership required.
“The observers will submit their report to Mallikarjun Kharge by tonight,” he said.
MLAs choose “their CM”
According to party sources, during the CLP meeting some lawmakers expressed their opinion personally on their preference for the CM over the central observers, while the others who were reluctant to share their views face-to-face were given the chance to do so in write.
“It was a kind of secret ballot where you could share your opinion by choosing between Shivakumar or Siddaramaiah, or any other third party leader, or let it be the decision of the high command,” an MLA elected official said on condition of anonymity .
It is said that while a section of the MLAs wanted to choose their leader at the meeting by a show of hands, the party decided against it as it could create an “open division”.
It is learned that Siddaramaiah insisted on getting the opinion of all MLAs before the party high command decides on the new leader of the CLP, who will subsequently lead the government as CM.
(With contributions from agencies)


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