Leadership change: Will abide by Congress high command’s decision, says Karnataka CM Siddaramaiah

Shivakumar warned leaders not to issue public statements on the matter of leadership change and the creation of multiple posts of DyCM.

BySouth First Desk

Published Jul 01, 2024 | 9:03 PM Updated Jul 01, 2024 | 9:03 PM

Monsoon preparedness in Karnataka

Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Monday, 1 July, said he would abide by the decision of the Congress high command on the issue of leadership change, amid a political tussle within the ruling Congress.

Last week, a Vokkaliga seer publicly requested Siddaramaiah to step down and make way for his deputy DK Shivakumar.

Meanwhile, AHINDA (backward classes) activists in the state declared their support for Siddaramaiah on Sunday and stated they would launch statewide protests if any such move is initiated.

Also Read: Vokkaliga seer sparks row, asks CM to make way for Shivakumar

Points to party high command

“It is not a matter to be discussed in public. Whatever decision the high command takes, we will go by it,” Siddaramaiah told reporters when asked about the Vishwa Vokkaligara Mahasamsthana Mutt seer Chandrashekhara Swami’s appeal.

“I don’t want to comment on what Swamiji says. Ours is a national party. There is a high command,” the chief minister added.

Meanwhile, Shivakumar warned leaders not to issue public statements on the matter of leadership change and the creation of multiple posts of deputy chief minister.

“If anyone crosses the limit, the party will take a decision,” Shivakumar said.

There have also been demands by some Ministers perceived to be close to Siddaramaiah to create more posts of Deputy Chief Minister and give them to leaders from Lingayat, SC, ST, and minority communities. The move is seen in some quarters as an attempt to clip the political wings of Shivakumar, who is also the state party chief.

Also Read: DK Shivakumar dismisses claim about YSRCP merging in Congress 

AHINDA backs Siddaramaiah

Responding to the swamiji’s statement, AHINDA state president Prabhulinga Doddamani announced, “We will always stand by CM Siddaramaiah as his backbone.”

“Seers making statements will cause religious problems. We request Seers not to make such statements. They are for all, not restricted to any one community. If they remove our beloved Siddaramaiah from power, we are warning that the Congress party will not exist.,” Doddamani said.

“From the AHINDA organisation, we wish for our sir to complete his 5-year term. If there is any debate about a change, we will protest in every single district and taluk against it and will stand by him as a backbone,” he added.

Shivakumar, a member of the Vokkaliga community, is currently the only deputy chief minister in the Siddaramaiah government.

There was stiff competition between Siddaramaiah and Shivakumar for the chief minister’s post after the declaration of Assembly election results in May last year, and the Congress had managed to convince the latter and made him the deputy chief minister.

There were some reports at the time that a compromise had been reached based on a “rotational chief minister formula,” according to which Shivakumar will become chief minister after two-and-half years but they have not been officially confirmed by the party.

Shivakumar has made no secret of his ambition to become chief minister, while Siddaramaiah had sought public support during the Lok Sabha polls so that the Congress would win the maximum number of seats in the state, which would strengthen his position.

(With PTI inputs)

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