The Congress party has full faith in Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and the next Assembly polls will be fought under his leadership,” former Chief Minister N. Dharam Singh said in Bidar on Thursday. He was addressing a party workers’ rally where Minister Eshwar Khandre was felicitated.
“Mr. Siddaramaiah is among the best Chief Ministers of Karnataka. He has introduced several welfare programmes for the poor and the deprived. He has announced three progressive budgets and successfully fought drought through programmes such as Kere Sanjivini and MNREGA. He has released enough funds for the development of Hyderabad-Karnataka. He has not lost sight of industrial development too. He is the only leader who can successfully counter persons such as B.S. Yeddyurappa, who are out to divide society on communal lines,” Mr. Singh said.
He denied claims by some leaders that he was behind Mr. Khandre’s elevation to the Cabinet. “He has the support of the people of Bidar. That has made him a Minister. Every Cabinet reshuffle is bound to disappoint some leaders. However, such things should not upset people who are in public service. Politics is a waiting game. We should not be disappointed with minor road blocks,” Mr Singh said, without referring to Rajshekar Patil, Humnabad MLA, who is upset over his non-inclusion in the Cabinet. Mr. Patil did not attend the rally.
Backward classes leader B. Narayan Rao it was wrong to say that all the Lingayats in the State were supporting the BJP because of the influence of leaders like Mr. Yeddyurappa. “Mr. Khandre will counter such influences.”
Mr. Khandre said he will work on improving all the urban local bodies in the district. “There are several government schemes already in place to develop Bidar district. I will ensure that they will be properly implemented,” he said.
Earlier, Mr. Khandre’s supporters took out a bike rally in the city.