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Congress declared veteran party leader Siddaramaiah as the Chief Minister of Karnataka

Veteran Congress leader and nine-time MLA Siddaramaiah edged out DK Shivakumar to become the next Chief Minister of Karnataka, where the party secured a thumping victory by winning 135 seats. He will be taking oath as the chief minister on May 20. This came after a series of meetings at the Congress office in Delhi. This will be his second stint in the top post after he led a successful five-year term as Chief Minister of the Congress government between 2013-18. DK Shivakumr has been chosen as the Deputy Chief Minister of the state.

The announcement came amid an intense power struggle between Karnataka state chief Shivakumar and Siddaramaiah over who will lead the government. Both leaders held discussions with the party Central leadership in Delhi. Rahul Gandhi also met party president Mallikarjun Kharge and held a closed-door meeting for nearly two hours.

After the results were announced on May 13, three Congress central observers consulted with newly elected Karnataka MLAs and even took their votes in a secret ballot on their choice for Chief Minister. The observers then briefed party chief Mallikarjun Kharge and submitted their report on Monday

On Sunday, the Congress Legislature Party passed a unanimous resolution authorising party president Kharge to pick the next chief minister of Karnataka.

Siddaramaiah won the Varuna seat, defetaing his closest rival BJP’s V Somanna by a margin of 46,163 votes.

Siddaramaiah, an advocate, is known as a mass leader who joined Congress in 2006 after his ouster from JD(S) of former Prime Minister Deve Gowda. During campaigning, the 75-year-old had announced that this was his last election and he would retire from electoral politics.

In 2013 too, Siddaramaiah was preffered by the Congress leadership to take the top post in Karnataka. Then, he had edged out Mallikarjun Kharge, now the AICC President and the then Union Labour and Employment Minister, to become Chief Minister.

Born on August 12, 1948 at Siddaramanahundi, a village in Mysuru district, Siddaramaiah graduated from Mysore University with BSc degree. He later studied Law from the same institution and pursued it as a profession for some time.

Siddaramaiah made his debut in the Karnataka Assembly in 1983, getting elected from Chamundeshwari on a Lok Dal Party ticket. He has won five times from this constituency and tasted defeat thrice.

During his tenure as CM, Siddaramaiah earned praise for his populist “Bhagya” schemes. However, his government’s decision to accord “religious minority” status to the dominant Lingayat community saw BJP emerging as the single largest party in 2018 Assembly polls.

In 2018, Siddaramaiah himself lost in Chamundeshwari in Mysuru to JD(S)’ G T Deve Gowda by 36,042 votes. He, however, won from Badami, the other constituency from where he had contested, and defeated BJP’s B Sriramulu by 1,696 votes.

About Editor in chief

Ashok Palit has completed his graduation from Upendranath College Soro, Balasore and post graduation from Utkal University in Odia Language and literture.. He has also carved out a niche for himself as a scribe of eminence after joining the profession in 1988. He is also an independent media production professional. He brings loads of experience to Advanced Media, Ashok Palit as a cineaste has been active in film criticism for over three decades. As a film society activist, he soared to eminence for his profound commitment to the art film appreciation and aesthetics of cinema. His mode of discourse is often erudite but always lucid and comprehensible marked by a perfect acumen so rare in the field. A film aesthete with an immense fond of critical sensibilities, he wrote about growth and development of odia cinema in New Indian Express, The Times of India, The Hindustan Times, The Asian Age and Screen. He has been working as an Editor for Cine Samaya from 2002-2004.. He had made solid contribution on cinema in many odia Dailies and weekly such as Samaj, Prajatantra, Dharatri, Samaya, Satabadi, and weekly Samaya.

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