Bengaluru: On the eve of a crucial meeting of office-bearers and district unit presidents of the Congress party, the crisis engineered by KPCC president Dr G. Parameshwar’s persistent demand that he be appointed deputy chief minister and Chief Minister Siddaramaiah’s threat to quit rather than consent to a number two in his cabinet has flared again, enveloping the 16 month-old Congress government.
Sources in Congress said with 14 MLAs backing Dr. Parameshwar through a memorandum, energy minister D. K. Shivakumar reportedly backed the KPCC president and pleaded with central leaders of the party in New Delhi on Wednesday that Dr Parameshwar be given a senior position while leaving Mr Siddaramaiah in place as CM, rather than a complete change of guard.
In the face of the continuing standoff, central leaders are preparing “a peace formula.” once Congress general secretary in-charge of Karnataka, Digvijay Singh, returns from the United States on Thursday.
Throwing light on what transpired when the Chief Minister and KPCC president visited Delhi last week, a senior leader told Deccan Chronicle that Mr. Siddaramaiah reportedly dug his heels in and threatened to resign if central leaders insisted on creation of the post of deputy chief minister. Dr Parameshwar stuck to his demand and told the leaders that he would only accept the position of deputy chief minister.