Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Sunday replaced 14 ministers and replaced them with 13 new faces, almost three years after his ministry was formed, barring minor changes during the period. The message to the members is that inefficiency and backbencher attitude will not help any longer.
Today, 9 cabinet rank ministers and 4 ministers of state were sworn in at Raj Bhavan with Governor Vajubhai Vala administering the oath of office and secrecy. The new faces include Tanveer Sait, Kagodu Thimmappa, Ramesh Kumar, Basavaraj Raya Reddy, H Y Meti, S S Mallikarjun, M R Seetharam, Santosh Lad and Ramesh Jarkiholi — all in cabinet rank.
Veteran Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge’s son Priyank Kharge was accommodated this time and Rudrappa Lamani, Eshwar Khandre and Pramod Madhwaraj were sworn in as Ministers of State.
All ministers who were shown the door include Qamarul Islam, Shamanoor Shivashankarappa, V Srinivasa Prasad, M H Ambareesh, Vinay Kumar Sorake, Satish Jarkiholi, Baburao Chinchansoor, Shivaraj Sangappa Tangadagi, S R Patil, Manohar Tahasildhar, K Abayachandra Jain, Dinesh Gundu Rao, Kimmane Ratnakar, P T Parameshwar Naik.
Noticeably these outgoing ministers were often hit by some corruption charge or the other, while many of them proved as non-performers in a party that is vying for “more dynamic members” as per Rahul Gandhi’s wish.
Congress party is in power in Karnataka, the sole bastion in the south now and the Assembly elections in two years time will a litmus test for the party in view of BJP regaining strong foothold in the state after it came to power in Centre in 2014.