BENGALURU: After much dillydallying senior Congress leader Dinesh Gundu Rao on Wednesday was appointed the President of Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC).
Rao who was serving as the working president in charge of South Karnataka has been elevated to the top post which is currently being held by Deputy Chief Minister of Karnataka Dr G Parameshwara.
Despite being kept out of the cabinet in the JD(S)-Congress coalition government, Dinesh was one of the few senior leaders who did not express dissent publicly instead worked towards pacifying dissenting legislators.
The 48-year-old five-time MLA of Gandhinagar constituency in Bengaluru confirmed the appointment over the phone to TNIE.
"I received a call from the high command this afternoon to confirm the appointment," Rao, who is currently in Sringeri, said. The Congress has surprised many with its choice to appoint a Brahmin as the KPCC chief.
"Challenging times need desperate measures. A shock treatment is sometimes required," a senior Congress leader from the state had said earlier over Rao's name being considered for the top post. Rao's appointment comes at a time when the Congress is looking to gain the support and votes of those from communities other than its core vote bank of AHINDA (An acronym for minorities, backward classes and dalits).
In the run-up to the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, the Congress is looking to use Rao's organisational skills to keep the party together in what could be a united fight with the JD(S) against the BJP.
"Former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah had lobbied for Dinesh Gundu Rao and is very happy with the party's decision," said a source close to Siddaramaiah.