A dinner meeting between Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and Home Minister Dr G Parameshwara in Deputy Chief Minister DK Shivakumar’s absence has fuelled speculations of infighting in the ruling party.
The meeting took place at Dr Parameshwara’s residence in the presence of PWD Minister Satish Jarkiholi who is nursing a grudge against Shivakumar’s interference in Belagavi politics, and Social Welfare Minister HC Mahadevappa.
Jarkiholi is Belagavi district-incharge minister in Siddaramaiah-led Congress government in Karnataka.
Notably, Shivakumar was not part of the dinner meeting on Friday.
The meeting was held on a day when Congress MLA Ravikumar Gowda claimed that Shivakumar would become the chief minister after 2.5 years of Siddaramaiah’s tenure as the chief minister.
Party insiders revealed that the meeting tried to placate Jarkiholi who has been sulking over the frequent interference of Shivakumar in Belagavi politics.
Jarkiholi is reportedly trying to plan a Dubai trip along with 20-odd Congress legislators to send a strong message to the party leadership.
The PWD Minister earlier had planned a similar trip to Mysuru, but was dropped after the intervention of the party high command.
Asked about it, Dr Parameshwara said it is not under his control to stop a personal trip.
Jarkiholi is upset with Shivakumar for withholding transfer of some officials from Belagavi Urban Development Department through Women and Child Development Minister Laxmi Hebbalkar.
The Belagavi district incharge minister alleged that the reinstated officials are appointees during the previous BJP government and angry over Shivakumar for ignoring his recommendations for the appointments to boards and corporations.
To resolve the dilemma, Siddaramiah held a meeting with Shivakumar on Friday and arrived at a consensus on 15 names, including suggestions of Jarkiholi. The list has been sent to the party high command for approval.
Though Dr Parameshwara denied any political issues discussed in the meeting, Jarkiholi said several political issues were discussed. However, he declined to elaborate on the issues discussed, but said there was nothing special about it.