BJP is a ‘sinking ship’ in Karnataka, Congress a united force: Randeep Surjewala


NEW DELHI: Terming the BJP as a ‘sinking ship’ in Karnataka which even Prime Minister Narendra Modi cannot save, Congress leaders on Tuesday said their party is ”united” in the southern state and will ensure the ”40 percent commission” government is ousted.

AICC general secretary Randeep Surjewala and former chief minister Siddaramaiah also dismissed reports claiming that the latter had pushed his case as a contender for the top post and said his statements by a channel were ”misinterpreted”.

They said Siddaramaiah had never claimed that he would be the chief minister and had only stated that he is a contender and that the party high command would decide after consulting the elected MLAs on who the leader would be.

Siddaramaiah and PCC president D K Shivakumar were in the national capital to attend the party’s central election committee meeting here on Tuesday.

Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge and former party chief Rahul Gandhi were present during the meeting, where the leadership discussed the allocation of tickets for the remaining 100 seats.

The Congress was the first to declare 124 candidates for the May 10 election to the 224-member Karnataka Assembly.

Surjewala told reporters that the screening committee and the Central Election Committee again met on Tuesday and discussed the probable candidates for the remaining seats and would declare some more seats by the late evening. He stressed that the leaders were unanimous while deciding on the party candidates for the upcoming elections.

”The ’40 percent Commission BJP Sarkara’ in Karnataka has floundered and failed. The so-called ‘double engine Sarkara’ is a double-betrayal for Karnataka. Modi government betrays Karnataka on one hand and the Bommai government brazenly loots Karnataka on the other hand,” he alleged.

”The way in which the BJP leaders are leaving the party in Karnataka in hordes, as over 10 MLAs have left expressing no confidence in the Bommai government, it (BJP) is a sinking ship which is on a nosedive and neither Prime Minister Narendra Modi nor the corrupt BJP government can save it anymore,” Surjewala told reporters.

He also claimed that the Congress stood firmly united while the BJP is running scared. He alleged that while Chief Minister Basavraj Bommai ”is not being respected anymore, former chief minister B S Yediyurappa is being insulted everyday”.

Siddaramaiah said he had given an interview to a TV channel which misinterpreted it. He claimed that he never said that he will be the chief minister.

”I said in the interview that I am also an aspirant for the chief minister’s post and, likewise, D K Shivakumar is also an aspirant for the chief minister’s post. The aim of both of us is to defeat BJP and to bring back the Congress party to power,” he said ”My statement in the interview is misinterpreted. What I said was I am an aspirant and Shivakumar is an aspirant and there is nothing wrong in being an aspirant,” he said, Ultimately, the newly-elected MLAs will have to elect the leader of the legislature party after the election, not now, and ultimately, the high command has to take a decision, he said.

Siddaramaiah claimed that there is a strong anti-incumbency against the BJP. He said the ”state has never had such a corrupt government”. Shivakumar also said their purpose is to jointly remove the ‘corrupt’ BJP government from power in the state.

Meanwhile, hitting out at Congress leaders Siddaramaiah and Shivakumar, Bommai said they are fighting for the chief minister’s post and their main focus is power and not the welfare of the people.

”People who have to decide (whom to elect), don’t have both (leaders) in mind… Both are dreaming about the chief minister’s seat, but it will not come true,” Chief Minister Bommai said.

Source: Press Trust of India

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