As top leaders remain aloof, Cong campaign turns CM’s one-man show

With many of the senior party leaders keeping themselves away from the electioneering, the ruling Congress campaign for the upcoming Assembly polls is seen as a one-man show of Chief Minister Siddaramaiah.

Siddaramaiah appears to be waging a lone battle ever since the launch of his Navakarnataka Nirmana Yatra on December 13, 2017. Top leaders from the state, including senior Cabinet ministers, have so far not taken any initiative to give the much-needed boost to the partys campaign.

These senior leaders were seen only when AICC president Rahul Gandhi held Janaashirvaada Yatra in Hyderabad-Karnataka and Mumbai-Karnataka regions recently.

Though Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president G Parameshwara, too, had launched a parallel yatra along with that of the chief minister, he subsequently abandoned it, leaving the Congress campaign incomplete. Siddaramaiah was to cover 124 constituencies, while the KPCC chief would tour the remaining 100 seats.

The two leaders were asked to take out separate campaigns owing to differences between them.

In contrast, the BJP has launched a high-decibel campaign, involving both the state and the Central leaders. Union Ministers from the state – Ananth Kumar, D V Sadananda Gowda and Anantkumar Hegde — are devoting much of their time for the campaign. Though the state unit of the BJP is riddled with many factions, the Central leadership has ensured that all of them are involved in the campaign being conducted at multiple locations across the state simultaneously.

Sources in the Congress said many of the senior leaders are upset with the party for giving prominence to Siddaramaiah.

The high command maintaining silence over Siddaramaiahs efforts to project himself as the chief minister candidate for a second term, and him unilaterally announcing candidates in over 80 constituencies, has also irked the leaders.

As far as the state Congress leaders are concerned, majority of them, including those close to Siddaramaiah, are busy preparing for their own contest in the coming polls. Even Parameshwara is keeping himself busy in Koratagere constituency, from where he is likely to contest. He lost the 2013 Assembly polls from the constituency.

The KPCC campaign committee led by Energy Minister D K Shivakumar recently gave a detailed power-point presentation on countering the BJP in the campaign. But the plan has, so far, remained only on papers, the sources pointed out.

With many of the senior party leaders keeping themselves away from the electioneering, the ruling Congress’ campaign for the upcoming Assembly polls is seen as a one-man show of Chief Minister Siddaramaiah.

Siddaramaiah appears to be waging a lone battle ever since the launch of his Navakarnataka Nirmana Yatra on December 13, 2017. Top leaders from the state, including senior Cabinet ministers, have so far not taken any initiative to give the much-needed boost to the party’s campaign.

These senior leaders were seen only when AICC president Rahul Gandhi held Janaashirvaada Yatra in Hyderabad-Karnataka and Mumbai-Karnataka regions recently.

Though Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president G Parameshwara, too, had launched a parallel yatra along with that of the chief minister, he subsequently abandoned it, leaving the Congress campaign incomplete. Siddaramaiah was to cover 124 constituencies, while the KPCC chief would tour the remaining 100 seats.

The two leaders were asked to take out separate campaigns owing to differences between them.

In contrast, the BJP has launched a high-decibel campaign, involving both the state and the Central leaders. Union Ministers from the state – Ananth Kumar, D V Sadananda Gowda and Anantkumar Hegde €” are devoting much of their time for the campaign. Though the state unit of the BJP is riddled with many factions, the Central leadership has ensured that all of them are involved in the campaign being conducted at multiple locations across the state simultaneously.

Sources in the Congress said many of the senior leaders are upset with the party for giving prominence to Siddaramaiah.

The high command maintaining silence over Siddaramaiah’s efforts to project himself as the chief minister candidate for a second term, and him unilaterally announcing candidates in over 80 constituencies, has also irked the leaders.

As far as the state Congress leaders are concerned, majority of them, including those close to Siddaramaiah, are busy preparing for their own contest in the coming polls. Even Parameshwara is keeping himself busy in Koratagere constituency, from where he is likely to contest. He lost the 2013 Assembly polls from the constituency.

The KPCC campaign committee led by Energy Minister D K Shivakumar recently gave a detailed power-point presentation on countering the BJP in the campaign. But the plan has, so far, remained only on papers, the sources pointed out.

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