Supporters of former Revenue and Mysuru District In-charge Minister who was removed from the cabinet take out a bike rally in the city on Wednesday. His supporters have called for a Mysuru bandh on Friday, June 24.
Former Revenue Minister set to fly to New Delhi to meet the national leaders; Dr H C Mahadevappa is the new Mysuru District In-Charge Minister
The recent cabinet expansion controversy is refusing to die down for the three-year-old Siddaramaiah government with the action now shifting to Bengaluru and New Delhi. Former Revenue and Mysuru District In-charge Minister V Srinivas Prasad who was removed from the cabinet is camping in Bengaluru, meeting his supporters and well-wishers.
In its efforts to placate Srinivas Prasad, who has vented his anger at Chief Minister Siddaramaiah for the way the person of his stature and clout was treated, the Congress high command has already sent senior Congress leader and Rajya Sabha member Oscar Fernandes to pacify Srinivas Prasad.
Oscar who arrived in Bengaluru on Tuesday was scheduled to meet Prasad in Mysuru at the former’s residence in Jayalakshmipuram but Prasad left for Bengaluru in the evening. The party high command has taken note of the closeness between Oscar and Srinivas Prasad and has reportedly told the latter not to take any hasty decision.
On Wednesday, Srinivas Prasad visited former Housing minister M H Ambareesh at his residence in J P Nagar and held discussions with him. A group of other ministers who were also dropped led by A B Maalaka Reddy met Srinivas Prasad at his Golf Course residence.
Sources close to Srinivas Prasad told City Today that he may not meet Oscar Fernandes and will visit New Delhi to meet the national leaders before taking decision on his next move. He is scheduled to catch a flight to New Delhi on Wednesday evening.
In his interaction with media persons, Srinivas Prasad had said that the issue was not about him or the 13 ministers who were dropped. “The Congress has a strong base in Karnataka and in this scenario, the party has to really think on how to save its base. I will apprise the high command on these developments and the national leaders must answer,” he said.
Prasad is important for the party for more reasons than one. He commands considerable influence among the Dalits in Mysuru and Chamarajanagar. If Dalits join hands either with Vokkaligas or Lingayats the combination becomes a political force. If a proper strategy is worked out, the Congress can effectively prevent the BJP from dominating.
This is precisely why the high command is not taking Srinivas Prasad lightly and making all out efforts to placate him. It is making desperate attempts to retain its stronghold in old in Karnataka after a series of electoral defeats.
As if adding fuel to the fire, cine-actor turned politician and Mandya strongman M H Ambareesh has said that Siddaramaiah that he was discarded like a pair of slippers.
“I am not power hungry. I have quit the Union minister’s post in the past and I have never lobbied with anybody to make me a minister. If Siddaramaiah had asked, I would have tendered my resignation. But he dropped us and labelled as inefficient ministers. We were treated like old footwear. It hurts,” he told reporters.
NEW DISTRICT IN-CHARGE MINISTER
Public Works Department Minister Dr H C Mahadevappa has been appointed as the new district in-charge minister of Mysuru. Chief Minister Siddaramaiah made the allocation on Wednesday at Krishna, his home office in Bengaluru. Till now, the post was held by V Srinivas Prasad who was dropped from the cabinet.