Rahul Gandhi asks Karnataka Congress leaders to wait, to meet Kumaraswamy first

JDS leader and Chief Minister-designate HD Kumaraswamy is slated to meet Rahul and Sonia Gandhi in New Delhi on Monday.

Rahul Gandhi asks Karnataka Congress leaders to wait, to meet Kumaraswamy first

By Shadab Siddiqui

Congress president Rahul Gandhi has reportedly denied permission to senior Congress leaders Siddaramaiah, DK Shivakumar and G Parameshwara for coming to the national capital for deliberations on formation of JDS-Congress government in Karnataka.

All these leaders were earlier slated to meet the Congress president in New Delhi to discuss names of leaders who would join the coalition government. Discussions were also slated to be held on the allocation of portfolios. However, the Gandhi scion has now told them that the meeting would be held after Congress leadership confirms the support of the JDS leadership.

Notably, JDS leader and Chief Minister-designate HD Kumaraswamy is slated to meet Rahul and Sonia Gandhi in New Delhi on Monday. Sources have told Zee News that there have been differences over allocation of portfolios and selection of candidate for the post of deputy chief minister.

Kumaraswamy, who will hold the office of Chief Minister, wants to keep Finance, Health and PWD ministries with himself whereas the Congress is eyeing key ministries like Home and Power.

The chief minister-designate has also declared that he would remain the Chief Minister for all five years. He cited an assurance given to him by senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad. The JDS leader has reportedly said that he was offered chief ministership for five years and only then he agreed for the post-poll alliance. According to sources, the JDS leader has refused to relent from his stand.

The JDS leader wants that he should be sworn in first, and then a decision should be taken on allocation of portfolios. He feels that there might be a controversy if allocation of portfolios is done before his swearing in.

Meanwhile, lobbying is also at full pace within the Congress for the post of Deputy Chief Minister. While DK Shivakumar, who has been hailed for keeping the JDS-Congress flock together during the political parleys in the state, is eyeing the position, some Lingayat members have demanded that the Deputy CM must be from their community.

A final decision on all the key issues concerning the government formation is likely to be taken on Monday during the meeting between the Congress president and Kumaraswamy. Following this, a joint meeting of the lawmakers from both the parties has been convened on Tuesday wherein a mutual stand is reached before the trust vote in Assembly.

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