Largely keeping away "tainted" members of Legislative Assembly, Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Saturday expanded his ministry with the induction of 28 ministers.
But the exercise -- five days after he was sworn-in alone -- has set off dissatisfaction among a section of Congress legislators who failed to get the berth. Significantly, none of the MLCs were accommodated.
Mining baron and Rajya Sabha member Anil Lad, elected from Bellary city, former working president of the Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee D K Shivakumar and R Roshan Baig failed to make it, in the wake of some pressure from within the Congress to start off with a "clean slate" by denying ministership to the "tainted". However, Anil's cousin Santosh Lad was included in the ministry.
Twenty were sworn in as cabinet ministers and the remaining eight as Ministers of State by Governor H R Bhardwaj at Glass House at Raj Bhavan, in the presence of Siddaramaiah and KPCC president G Parameshwara, whose bid to get the Deputy chief minister's post failed.
Those who were sworn in as cabinet ministers included former Union ministers V Srinivasa Prasad and M H Ambarish, who is an actor-turned-politician. Film actress Umashree is the lone woman representative in the ministry.
Four MLAs elected from Bangalore made it to the Team Sddaramaiah -- Cabinet Ministers Ramalinga Reddy and K J George, and Ministers of State Krishna Byregowda and Dinesh Gundurao, son of former chief minister late Gundu Rao. Motamma, former Leader of Opposition in the Council, ex-CWC member and one of the aspirants for ministerial berth, was conspicuous by her absence at the swearing-in ceremony. Supporters of Shivakumar and Tanveer Sait held protests over denial of Ministership to them.
Senior party leaders including R V Deshpande, Qamar-ul-Islam, T B Jayachandra and H K Patil were among those made cabinet ministers, along with Shivaraj S Thangadagi, who won the 2008 elections as an independent and joined the Congress before the May 5 polls.
The ministry now has five vacancies as Siddaramaiah can accommodate a total of 33 ministers given the strength of the assembly, which is 224.
The cabinet ministers are: R V Deshpande, Qamar-ul-Islam, Prakash B Hukkeri, Ramalinga Reddy, T B Jayachandra, B Ramanath Rai, H K Patil, Shamanur Shivashankarappa, V Srinivasa Prasad, H C Mahadevappa, K J George, H S Mahadeva Prasad, M H Ambarish, Vinay Kumar Sorake, Baburao Chinchanasur, U T Khadar, Satish Jarkiholi, M B Patil, H Anjaneya and Shivaraj S Thangadagi.
Those made Ministers of State are Abhaychandra Jain, Dinesh Gundurao, Krishna Byregowda, Sharana Prakash Patil, Santosh Lad, Kimmane Ratnakar, Umashree and P T Parameshwar Naik.
Image: Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah