Bengaluru: New MLCs M.R. Seetharam, Umashree and H.P. Sudham Das took oath at the Vidhana Soudha on Thursday.
Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, Minister for Law and Parliamentary Affairs H.K. Patil, Minister for Minor Irrigation, Science and Technology N.S. Boseraju and Chairman of the Legislative Council Basavaraj Horatti were present on the occasion. CM Siddaramaiah wished good luck to the new MLC’s.
Karnataka Governor Thawarchand Gehlot had appointed them to the post of MLC. The appointments were opposed by the senior leaders in the grand old party. A complaint was also made to the Governor to withhold the appointments.
Umashree is a close confidante of Siddaramaiah. She represented Teradal constituency in Bagalkot district and became a minister for Women and Child Development in the Siddaramaiah led government between 2013 and 2018. In 2018, she lost the elections and in 2023, Umashree did not contest the elections.
Seetharam is a former minister, entrepreneur and educationist. Sources say that he is highly resourceful and close to Siddaramaiah.
Sudham Das is the son of former MLA H. Puttadasa who represented Satanuru constituency. Dy CM D.K. Shivakumar went on to represent the seat later. Sources said that Sudham Das had joined the Congress party five months ago. Das is a former officer of the Enforcement Directorate (ED).
The elevation of Sudham Das has been opposed by the party leaders especially from the Dalit community and complaints were made in this regard to the high command. The nomination has become a bone of contention between CM Siddaramaiah and Dy CM Shivakumar.
A complaint was also filed with the Governor against the nomination of MLC Seetharam to the post. It was alleged that Seetharam faced charges of illegal money transfer. The Governor had made the appointment after getting an explanation from the government in this regard, sources said.
The nomination of the candidates had created a rift within the ruling Congress party. The party leaders have taken serious objection to the selection of candidates and slammed the leadership for preferring senior leaders and their family members.
Sanket Yenagi, AICC Spokesperson and Supreme Court advocate, had stated that the party needs to create special opportunities for competent, well-educated, passionate and dedicated youth, rather than preferring only senior leaders and their families.