BENGALURU: Assembly speaker and senior Congress leader KB Koliwad lashed out at caretaker Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and accused him of destroying the party in the state. Few other Congress leaders too have expressed displeasure over Siddaramaiah’s election strategies and the party’s decision to join hands with JD(S). Koliwad, who lost the assembly elections from Ranebennur in North Karnataka, accused Siddaramaiah of helping an independent candidate who won from Ranebennur. Speaking to mediapersons at his residence in the city, Koliwad urged the party leadership to keep Siddaramaiah away from Congress.
Koliwad said Siddaramaiah is not an original Congressman and he had opposed the party’s decision to give him a ticket to contest the elections. “I got the ticket after contacting our party president Rahul Gandhi. No one can take any action against me as I am a born Congressman,” Koliwad said, while responding to a question if the party would initiate disciplinary action against him for speaking against the Chief Minister.
Meanwhile, few other Congress leaders, especially those from Mumbai-Karnataka region have expressed displeasure over Siddaramaiah’s election strategies. “What was the need to take up a sensitive issue like according separate religion status for the Lingayat community? It did a lot of damage to the party in the region,” a Congress leader said.
“Now, after the elections, the party has taken a decision to join hands with the JD(S). It will prove disastrous for the party in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections,” the leader said.Most Congress ministers, who were in the forefront of the movement demanding a separate religion status for the Lingayats have lost elections.
KB Koliwad (Congress)
Votes polled: 59,572
Lost to: R Shankar(KPJP)
Votes polled: 63,910