New Delhi: Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge is expected to invite top opposition leaders to attend the swearing-in ceremony of the new Karnataka chief minister and deputy chief minister, according to sources.
They said that Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, Rai Bareli MP Sonia Gandhi, party general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and other senior party leaders will attend the event. The oath-taking ceremony will be held in Bengaluru on May 20.
In 2018, when Janata Dal (Secular) leader HD Kumaraswamy was sworn in as the chief minister of the Karnataka coalition government, a galaxy of Opposition leaders attended the ceremony.
The ceremony was attended by Congress leaders Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee of the Trinamool Congress, then Andhra Pradesh CM Chandrababu Naidu of the Telugu Desam Party, Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal of the Aam Aadmi Party, Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan and other top leaders like the Nationalist Congress Party’s Sharad Pawar, Sharad Yadav from the Janata Dal (United), Rashtriya Janata Dal’s Tejashwi Yadav and Left’s Sitaram Yechury and D Raja.
In 2013 Siddaramaiah had taken oath at the same venue, the Sree Kanteerava Stadium here when he became the chief minister of the State for the first time.
WhileSiddharamaiah has been named the new CM, the Karnataka Congress chief DK Shivakumarwill be the Deputy Chief Minister. Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge tweeted a picture of him flanked by Siddaramiah and Shivakumar and is seen raising the hands of both leaders to signal a consensus. “Team Congress is committed to ushering progress, welfare and social justice for the people of Karnataka. We will implement the 5 guarantees promised to 6.5 Cr Kannadigas,” he wrote on Twitter.
The party has also convened the meeting of the Congress Legislature Party (CLP) meeting this evening in Bengaluru. The Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) chief Shivakumar has written to all the legislators, asking them to attend the meeting of the newly-elected MLAs, MLCs and MPs at the Indira Gandhi Bhavan on Queen’s Road today in Bengaluru at 7 pm today.
According to sources, Congress President Kharge worked round-the-clock to break the political deadlock over the next chief minister and arrived at a consensus for government formation. Central Observers from the All India Congress Committee (AICC) have been asked to reach Bengaluru to conduct the CLP Meeting.
Shivakumar who arrived at the residence of general secretary KC Venugopal in the national capital last evening told reporters that, the party high command had taken the call on the chief minister.
Celebrations Across Karnataka
Celebrations, meanwhile, broke out near the residence of Siddaramaiah in Bengaluru and at his native village in the Mysuru district on Thursday morning after it emerged that he will be the next Chief Minister. His supporters shouted slogans in his favour as the news came out that he would take oath as the CM on May 20. The residents of Siddaramanahundi, the native village of Siddaramaiah were, in fact, jubilant since Wednesday following reports that their leader would become the chief minister again. The villagers set off crackers, raised slogans hailing Siddaramaiah, and distributed sweets.
Security has been stepped up and banners have been put up outside Congress leader Siddaramaiah’s residence as well.
It is notable that in the May 10 elections to the 224-member Karnataka Assembly, the Congress scored an emphatic victory by bagging 135 seats while the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the former prime minister HD Deve Gowda-led Janata Dal (Secular) secured 66 and 19 seats, respectively.