New Delhi: A day before the oath taking ceremony in Bengaluru, Karnataka Chief Minister designate Siddaramaiah and D.K. Shivakumar, the Deputy Chief Minister designate, on Friday met former party chief Rahul Gandhi and his sister Priyanka Gandhi Vadra to invite them for the ceremony.
Siddaramaiah and Shivakumar both arrived in the national capital on Friday afternoon to meet senior party leaders and invite them for the swearing-in ceremony scheduled in Bengaluru on Saturday.
After the meeting with the two Karnataka leaders, Rahul Gandhi took to Facebook and wrote: “Our focus is to fulfil the 5 Guarantees and build a better future for the people of Karnataka.”
He attached pictures of him with Siddaramaiah, Shivakumar and Priyanka Gandhi.
The two leaders were also supposed to meet party chief Mallikarjun Kharge to invite him for the swearing in ceremony and to also discuss the cabinet formation in the southern state.
However, party General Secretary KC Venugopal and Karnataka in-charge Randeep Singh Surjewala met Kharge at his residence.
Surjewala and Venugopal then left the Congress president’s residence. Soon after, Venugopal arrived at his residence with Surjewala, Siddaramaiah and Shivakumar too joined them.
Siddaramaiah has also visited Saravana Bhavan in Connaught Place.
According to party sources, the party leaders are discussing the cabinet ministers and their strength. The source said that the party might decide on the number of cabinet ministers by night.
Speaking to the media here, Kharge’s son Priyank Kharge, who also won in Karnataka Assembly polls, said: “The nominated CM and Deputy CM have come to take the final decision on the Council of Ministers.”
He said, after having words with the general secretary in-charge and preparing final list, they will take it to the Congress president.
Taking a swipe at the BJP, the Congress MLA said: “The BJP should think about why they lost the election and how much division is there in their party. People of Karnataka have voted for development.”
The Congress has announced LoP in the outgoing assembly Siddaramaiah as Karnataka’s chief minister designate while it announced party’s state unit chief DK Shivakumar as the deputy chief minister designate in the state.
The party also said that Shivakumar will be the only Dy CM in the southern state and he will also continue as the state unit chief of the party till Lok Sabha elections next year.
The Congress had triumphed in Karnataka by winning 135 out of 224 seats in the southern state while the ruling BJP was reduced to 66 seats. The JD-S which was hoping to play the role of ‘kingmaker’ in the state was also reduced to 19 seats.
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