BENGALURU: Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Sunday rapped state Congress leaders for their show of disunity. Karnataka Congress leaders, who had been issuing statements and propping up Siddaramaiah for CM, received a stern reprimand from AICC president Rahul Gandhi, who summoned senior Congress state leaders -- Coalition Committee chairman Siddaramaiah, Water Resources minister D K Shivakumar, KPCC president Dinesh Gundu Rao and Deputy CM G Parameshwar -- to Delhi for a meeting on Sunday.
He also warned them of stern disciplinary action if they failed to fall in line.
Gandhi told state Congress leaders that “when we are speaking about Karnataka as a model of the coalition that will be followed nationally and with statements and counter-statements, what kind of message will it send to the rest of the country? Please do not let this opportunity slip away in showing our unity," he reportedly told them.
Sources said that JDS supremo H D Deve Gowda had complained about the “Siddaramaiah for CM’’ statements that were being issued by Congress MLAs and ministers regularly, and how embarrassing it was for the coalition government headed by H D Kumaraswamy.
So in response, the High Command asked state leaders why such statements about Siddaramaiah are being issued now when Kumaraswamy will be CM for the next five years, as has been agreed upon.
This is not the first time that Rahul Gandhi has summoned state leaders and given them a mouthful, but this is the first time they have been warned of consequences if they fail to obey.
The issue of Yeshwanthpur MLA S T Somashekar calling a meeting of MLAs is also said to have figured, and the national leadership asked state leaders what was its significance, and who was behind it.
Rahul Gandhi is also said to have told them not to go to the media with their complaints and issues, and squabble in public, but deal with it in a dignified way behind closed doors.
Vishwanath should talk to his party chief, says Deshpande
Vijayapura: Bickering continued in the coalition ranks, despite strict warnings to both parties to refrain from going public with their rancour.
The latest barb was by Revenue Minister R V Deshpande, who said that if JDS state president A H Vishwanath was unhappy with the coalition leadership, he should complain to his party president.
“Being a president of the JDS, he should speak responsibly instead of questioning the integrity of Congress leaders. A few people feel that they are being ignored. In order to overcome this, they make controversial statements only to be in news so that they are recognised,” the minister said.