The newly-elected Congress government in Karnataka under Chief Minister Siddaramaiah is set to swear in a 29-member Cabinet on Saturday with several prominent leaders including state Congress president G Parameshwara and former working president D K Shivakumar missing from the list for various reasons.
The new Cabinet is set to feature a bunch of veterans with experience in administration alongside a few new faces as the Congress balances caste and regional equations. The Congress push for a clean image has cost seasoned leaders like D K Shivakumar,Roshan Baig a position in the Cabinet on account of their names featuring in investigations,sources said. Three to four people have lost out due to the push for people with clean images, a Congress source said.
We will be swearing in 29 ministers on Saturday. Nobody involved in major scandals are in the Cabinet, Siddaramaiah said following his arrival in Bangalore on Friday evening.
Congress state president Parameshwara who lost the recent elections opted out of the ministry,the sources said. He was an aspirant to the position of a deputy chief minister which is not being created.
Among the new faces set to be in the ministry are those of Dinesh Gundu Rao,son of former chief minister Gundu Rao,film actor M H Ambareesh,actress Umashree,A Manju from Hassan, Sharan Patil from Gulbarga,son of a former minister Krishna Byregowda and mining businessman Santhosh Lad,the sources said. A minister from the erstwhile Bangarappa government K J George is set to make a comeback in the Siddaramaiah ministry. The minorities representation is also set to feature U T Khader from coastal Karnataka and Qamarul Islam from north Karnataka.
Among the veterans in the Congress,Kagodu Thimappa has lost out on a ministerial position but has been proposed for the post of the Speaker of the Assembly and despite his rejection of the move Siddaramaiah has taken the onus of convincing him to take up the position.
The Congress veterans who are set to be in the Cabinet are R V Deshpande,whose progeny is married to that of NCP leader Praful Patel,educationist and Lingayat Shamanur Shivashankarappa,Lingayat leader S R Patil,H K Patil,Malaaka Raddy,Ramanath Rai from Mangalore,T B Jayachandra,Appajigouda and Ramalinga Reddy.
New entrants to the Congress with Siddaramaiah in the year 2006 H C Mahadevappa and V Srinivas Prasad are also in line to take the oath on Saturday,the sources said.