Cabinet posts: Angry netas meet, pitch for six berths

Bengaluru: In a concerted effort to mount pressure on Congress leaders to induct new faces into the cabinet, former ministers, including Satish Jarkiholi, R Ramalinga Reddy, Tanveer Sait, R. Roshan Baig and several leaders, are likely to meet again next week to draw up their strategies ahead of winter session of legislature commencing in Belagavi next month. 

Mr Jarkiholi without mincing words, has already stated that he is "interested" in returning to the cabinet, Mr Reddy obliquely expressed displeasure, stating that party leaders should not delay the expansion any further.

Speaking to Deccan Chronicle, a senior Congress leader disclosed that these leaders seem to have now realized that the coalition set up would work well. "All the while, Mr Jarkiholi till last month when his feud with water resources minister, D. K. Shivakumar's close aide, Laxmi Hebbalkar broke, had maintained that he was not inclined to get into the cabinet. But, statement of his in Belagavi on Friday expressing his willingness to join the cabinet is significant in itself, as they have started realising that the coalition set-up which was considered to be imposed by the party high command is going to work anyway. Hence, they want to get into the cabinet," the leader added. 

Another leader stated that be it Mr Reddy or Mr Jarkiholi, they are considered to be crafty political players in the party.  "They would not have made these statements unless they have realized the importance of coalition politics going to stay.  The party's decision to offer Mr Kumaraswamy full term itself is a key decision. The just concluded by-elections in the state, has also sent out a loud message that the coalition can win in elections as well. Hence, leaders have now decided to get into cabinet at the earliest, as there are only six berths available in Congress' quota," the leader added. 

Several leaders including former chief minister Siddaramaiah, KPCC president Dinesh Gundurao, and others have indicated that new faces would make it to the cabinet soon. First, these leaders awaited the arrival of JD (S) patriarch from his overseas tour for a discussion on the exercise, and are now ready to take up the issue with Congress president Rahul Gandhi on completion of Assembly polls in five northern states.

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