The JD(S) has softened its stand on Mayor’s post and given it up for Congress but with certain conditions. The conditions are that the limit of Deputy Mayor’s funds must be increased and five important standing committees, including the Finance Standing Committee should be given to JD(S). Under this condition it is almost certain that the Congress and JD(S) coalition will continue, reported Kannada Prabha.
Last week Home Minister Ramalinga Reddy had met JD(S) supremo H D Deve Gowda and held talks about Mayoral elections and Congress JD(S) coalition. On Thursday he along with KPCC Executive President Dinesh Gundurao met JD(S) State President HD Kumaraswamy at latter’s house in JP Nagar and discussed the same. He appealed to HD Kumaraswamy to continue the coalition and Kumaraswamy insisted that this time JD(S) should get the Mayor’s post. Ramalinga Reddy convinced him that Congress strength had increased in BBMP and the Party leaders or Corporators would not agree to leave the Mayor's post.
Kumaraswamy said that the coalition could continue but Congress had been given Mayor’s post twice and at least once it can be given to JD(S). Both Ramalinga Reddy and Dinesh Gundurao convinced him that since elections are on the way, Mayor’s post cannot be given up. Both CM and KPCC President would not agree for it. There are two more years for the coalition and the same concern can be negotiated later.
Finally, Kumaraswamy said JD(S) would give up Mayor’s post but the limits of the Deputy Mayor’s funds should be increased, major five Standing Committees, including Finance Standing Committee, should be given to the JD(S). He said once given it should not be asked to step down like the last time. JD(S) members must be taken into confidence in the administration of BBMP. The harassment to women members must be stopped. Party Chief Kupendra Reddy will discuss this at the core committee meeting and take a final decision in this regard, he said.
Ramalinga Reddy said he and Dinesh Gundu Rao had gone to meet Kumaraswamy to wish him on his health and discussed the BBMP issues incidentally. He said Kumaraswamy has responded positively and he would discuss the demand’s with the Party president.
Dinesh Gundurao also said there is no problem with J D(S) and Congress coalition. While Congress gets to decide who will be the Mayor JD(S) gets to decide the Deputy Mayor.
Kumaraswamy also said he has receive positive response from Ramalinga Reddy and Dinesh Gundu Rao and Kupendra Reddy would handle the rest.
Meanwhile, the Bengaluru Hitarakshana Okkuta ha surged the Chief Minister and KPCC President Dr Parameshwar to select Sampathraj, member from Devara Jeevanahalli. Speaking at a press meet at Press Club on Thursday the President of Okkuta, Prof Sidde Gowda, Dalit Sangharsha Samiti (Ambedkar Theory) General Coordinator Mavalli Shankar, Tippu Sulthan Samukta Ranga president Sardar Amhed Khureshi and others urged that Sampath Raj has been a member twice and a stanch pro-Kannada activist and he should be given the chance to become Mayor.
In the Congress circles a new debate has started as to whether a reserved candidate who has won in general ward or a candidate from the reserved ward should be chosen. Heavy lobbying is underway as days of Mayoral elections are nearing and a new argument has surfaced that only those SC candidates who have won from reserved ward should be considered for the Mayor’s post. This has created new competitors to DJ Halli ward Sampathaj and Subhashnagara ward L Govindaraju.
Both Sampathraj and Govindaraju belong to SC category but both have won from general wards. Those who have won from reserved wards are arguing that after two years the Mayor’s post will be open to general category, both can be considered then. From Congress 15 reserved candidates have been elected. Sampathraj and Govindaraju are the only two who are elected for the second term. The rest 13 are first timers. They are arguing that the fact that they have defeated the opponent from the general category should be taken as a plus point and not a negative point. Hence they should not be deprived of the opportunity.