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Siddaramaiah to be new chief minister of Karnataka

Last updated on: May 10, 2013 18:38 IST

Siddaramaiah elected Karnataka CM; Kharge may take Bansal's seat!


Vicky Nanjappa in Bangalore

Senior Congress leader Siddarmaiah will be the next chief minister of Karnataka.

Although the Congress claims that it was a unanimous decision, there were at least 30 legislators who were not in favour of Siddaramaiah.

An official announcement will be made in New Delhi soon.

Siddarmaiah is likely to be sworn in as the chief minister on May 13.

The swearing in ceremony is likely to be held at the Kanteerva stadium in Bangalore. This is the first time that a swearing in ceremony is not being held at the Vidhan Soudha lawns. The reason for shifting the venue is due to the ongoing metro work around Vidhan Soudha.

It was quite an effort to convince the Congress leaders to remain united over the candidature of Siddarmaiah as chief minister.

Congress sources in Congress tell that Mallikarjuna Kharge another aspirant to the post would be given the railway portfolio at the Centre.

G Parameshwar, who was also opposing Siddarmaiah, has been assured of a cabinet portfolio.

The Congress has also decided to make a Lingayat leader as the Deputy chief minister.

The name of the Deputy CM came up after some leaders from the Lingayat community demanded good representation in the wake of the community voting in large numbers for the Congress.

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Siddaramaiah elected new Karnataka CM

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Siddaramaiah, a two-time deputy chief minister, was formerly with the Janata Dal-Secular before he crossed over to the Congress in 2006. The reason? JD-S supremo H D Deve Gowda did not consider his seniority and chose his son H D Kumaraswamy over him to be the Chief Minister.

Prior to the 2013 elections, he was the Leader of Opposition.

Born in 1948, Siddaramaiah started off as an advocate in Mysore. He belonged to the Kuruba community, which has the third largest vote share in Karnataka. He was a law teacher for a few years before taking the jump into politics in 1978.

He first entered the Karnataka assembly in 1983.

He became a hit among the Kannadigas when he spearheaded the movement called Kannada Kavalu Samithi, which was set up to implement Kannada as the official language of the state.

After the 1985 mid-term polls, Siddaramaiah became the animal husbandry minister under Ramakrishna Hegde. However, in the following elections in 1989 he tasted defeat.

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Siddaramaiah elected Karnataka CM

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He then made his presence felt after the 1994 elections when he became the finance minister in the JD-S government headed by Deve Gowda. People of Karnataka still say that he presented the best budgets.

Although his favourite, Gowda always kept Siddaramaiah distanced.

The belief was that he was too powerful a leader and commanded mass support and respect.

Despite being a senior, he was not considered for the post of chief minister, when Deve Gowda had to hand over power in Karnataka after being made the prime minister. The chief minister's post went to J H Patel while Siddaramaiah was made the deputy CM.

The 1999 election was a wash out of sorts for the JD-S. Even Siddaramaiah lost.

However he came back strong in the 2004 elections. The JD-S formed the government with the Congress headed by N Dharam Singh in which Siddaramaiah was the Deputy CM. However, two years later when the JD-S withdrew support from the Congress and allied with the BJP. Siddaramaiah quit as he realised this was a ploy to promote Kumaraswamy.

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